“The Quilt of Life” By Dhruv Raman Raghavan

I’m a worker eagle soaring through the sky

above me is the never ending plain of light blue and white

below me is the colorful quilt of life

each day, I fly over the world, and take some stories from it

my job is to give these stories to the weavers of the quilt

each block of fabric is unique and essential in the making of the quilt

it has been woven since the birth of the planet

its threads and dyes are constantly shifting

I swoop down to one particular land

my birthplace, India

a diverse land of many cultures

there are Hindus, Muslims, Jains, Christians, Buddhists and many more people

I see the bustling cities of Chennai and Coimbatore

Cars, autos and motorcycles weaving in and out of lanes

street vendors shouting out products

people walking in and out of small apartment buildings

taxis turning to nice neighborhoods

I see glorious and beautiful temples

some are centuries old and are dedicated to an even older faith

with tall towers with different designs

gold and bronze pillars

decorated with scenes of gods

I see people walking in and out

I hear priests chanting prayers

they place ornaments on the majestic idols

worshippers admiring the idols and wearing beautiful kurtas and sarees

I see farmers busy in their land

they are cultivating okra, brinjals, snake gourds, dal, rice, and much more

the smell of spices coming from each house

cinnamon, cumin, asafetida, bay leaves, cardamom, and much more

grandmas prepare for holidays by making sweets and desserts

gulab jamun, jalebis, kozhukattai and murukku are just some of them

I fly over trees with jackfruits, mangoes, guavas, and star fruits

I fly over jungles with tigers, buffaloes, deer and elephants

I hear children playing, laughing, and talking

in over 1000 different languages

I see their simple villages with straw huts and wells

they are proud of who they are and where they live

though some sleep with empty stomachs and aching limbs

but it’s getting dark and I must return to my nest

I look forward to tomorrow and all the days after

since no two parts of this world are identical

that is why the quilt is so remarkable and diverse

 

 

 

“The Flavor of Culture” by Iman Ilias

I think it’s safe to say

Today wasn’t the best of days

I failed my Algebra test

And in Phys Ed I didn’t get to rest

Now finally I’m back home

Looking for some comfort

I search the fridge

Ah! There it is

My grandmother’s Chicken Karhai

A Pakistani curry made of chicken and delightful spices.

As I sit down to eat,

I am transported on a wondrous journey

The vibrant red color of the curry

Reminds me of the clothes women wear

At traditional Pakistani weddings

Red, yellow, blue, green

Striking patterns stitched with silver thread on them

I think of their long, dangling earrings

How they swing back and forth gracefully

As they dance and sing jovially

I savor the rich flavor of the chicken,

And I recall eating Biryani at the local mosque

And how the community there was in fact

Like the delicious rice itself

Both composite blends

Each grain a different color than another

And each person is too

The shape of every grain is distinct

And the backgrounds of all the people different

But both the rice and the community

Come together as one

To provide a wholesome and beautiful result

All those people who think Muslims are terrorists

Don’t know what Islam is really like

They don’t know who we truly are

We who embrace love and respect

Not who encourage violence and hatred

Who believe in family, and community, and strength of character

The texture of the warm, white, scrumptious Naan bread

That I eat with the curry

Evokes memories of the cozy blanket that family provides

In times of struggle

In times of failure,

My family tells me that failure is in fact not a bad thing

But that it offers many lessons of life

That I should learn from my mistakes

And learn what I should be wary of next time

Family will be the first ones

To pick you up when you fall

Family is the people who feel proudest of you

When you experience success

They’re the people who shape your values

And the way you look at life

As I finish the meal, I rise from the table

And my spirits rise as well

 

 

“Spring” by Leo Russell and Sophie Alzona

I felt my heartbeat dance in my chest as Winter reached for my hand, sitting on the bench near the schoolyard.

“What’re you doing?” I asked quietly, meeting her gaze.  Her cheeks flushed as she turned away, whispering, “Nothing.”

“You know it would ruin your reputation, right?” That just had to come out of my mouth. “I mean, you’re really cute and all, for all I know all the guys . . . and all the girls . . . are drooling over you, and you’re already dating Summer.  That’s what I was worried about this whole time.”

“We broke up,” she said, her voice cracking. “A few weeks before we had met.  That information that you got was wrong.  She has cancer now.”

“Oh my God,” I said.  I squeezed her hand that had somehow made it into mine as we were talking. “It’s gonna be okay, she’ll be fine.”

“No,” she said, tears threatening to spill out of her eyes. “It’s not okay. I don’t love her any more.  I don’t know what’s wrong with me!”

I looked over at her again.  “Maybe it’s because you found someone new.”

*****

I saw her in the hallways after we had held hands for the first time.  She would quickly look at me in Science, the one class we had together, but would then turn away just as quick when I looked back.

“Hiya,” I said, a few weeks after we had talked in Science.  I had decided it was the right thing to do.

“Summer’s in the hospital,” she mourned.  “Her results are good.”

“I-I’m so happy to hear that,” I crowed.  “You two back together?”  I didn’t mean to say that.

“No, we’re not,” she said, looking over at me.  “Why? Do you want us to be together?  Do you not like me anymore either?”

“No, no, it’s nothing like that!” I cried.  “I really like you, Winter!”  Another thing that I

didn’t mean to say.

She looked over, a light red blush dusted her cheeks.  “Oh.”

I looked over at her with what was I hoped was a look of expectancy.  “What do you want?” she questioned, before her blush deepened, and again she said, “Oh.”

When she leaned in, my heart started beating a million miles per hour, like when she was holding my hand for the first time.  “Yeah, that’s right,” I said.  Of course.  Ruin the moment, Spring.

She smashed her lips onto mine and I kissed back. When she leaned away, her face was no longer red.  “Wow,” she spoke softly.

“Yeah,” I said.

“Wow,” she repeated.  “F-Fall Out Boy… I mean, that was, uh, nice!”

I laughed slightly. “Fall Out Boy? Where did that come from?”

The blush crept back onto her cheeks.  “Nowhere.  I was just thinking.”

“Some thinking,” I teased.  She punched me on the arm lightly, laughing too, and saying, “Shut up!”

She quickly grabbed my hand for the second time, and I leaned into her shoulder.  “No PDA, girls,” our teacher, Mrs. Purcell my English teacher, prompted.  “I saw that.”

She sighed and I took my head off her shoulder, although she still continued to play with my fingers below the table.

“Some romantic setting. Don’t be homophobic,” I heard her mutter.

I laughed and she looked up.  “Class’s starting, sweetheart,” I said.

“S-sure,” she stuttered after a few moments.

“At least you didn’t say ‘Fall Out Boy’ this time.”

She giggled.  Which was adorable.

*****

Once we got out of there, she took my hand and dragged me outside.

“Where are we going, Winter?” I asked, my ears heating up at how easily she grabbed at my hand.  I could feel it, so I drew my hand back and covered my face with it.

“What?” she questioned, looking back quickly, her platinum blonde hair swinging over her shoulder. “Oh,” she said quietly, then yelled out, “FALL OUT BOY!”

I laughed, the blush growing darker.  “Shut up!”

“Really?” she joked.  “I can’t, Spring!”

“Oh, I knew that already,” I said.  She quickly pecked me on the cheek and then shrieked.

“What?” I said, panicking.  “What’s wrong, Winter?!”

“You’re so soft!” she said loudly, smothering me in a hug.  Her face was flushed and her hair now tousled.

“I love you,” I teased, embracing her.

“M-me too,” she said, then snuggled up, making my face flush red.  “You’re blushing,” she said, looking up.  “That’s cute.  Super cute.”

She then looked away, down at the ground, and pulled herself from me.

“That was something,” I said.

*****

After the best moment in my life I went to English class. The rest of the afternoon was pretty boring although when I saw Winter in the hallway I smiled playfully at her and she smiled back.

Life was going well for about 2 months from them, me and Winter got more serious and spring break was just around the corner!  I was practically skipping to class when Winter ran up behind me and grabbed me around my waist to stop me from moving, laying her head on my shoulders.

“Need-weeze-to-weeze-tell-weeze-you-weeze-something,” she said, gasping for air. Winter looked a little worried.

“OK, just catch your breath,” I said, unsure if what Winter was going to say was bad or good.

“Um, well, Summer is doing better and she’s going to be coming to school tomorrow,” she practically spit out.

“I… I… great!” I said, “Wait, why do you look worried?”

Winter looked at the floor and started to bite her lip, “Well, I’m not sure what her reaction will be to us dating.  She might be mad or she could be fine with it.”

“Wait, you didn’t tell her?” I felt my face getting hot, tears started to form in my eyes.

Winter obviously noticed, as she quickly added, “I didn’t want her to think that I didn’t care about her because she’s still my friend . . . or I hope that she still is.  I don’t want her to think that I wasn’t faithful to her during our relationship.”

At least Winter didn’t still like Summer. She was just trying to not cause any more drama. I smiled at her and whispered in her ear, “Fall Out Boy.”  That would be our always.

*****

The following morning when I finally got to school after missing the bus, I saw a girl with short dirty blonde hair talking to Winter.  The girl seemed angry.

I approached them slowly. Once Winter saw me, her eyes got wide with fear. Her ears started to get red, which only happened when she was nervous. Great.

“Hey, Winter,” I said casually. “What’s up?”

No reply.

“Hey Winter,” I said a little bit louder. “What’s up?”

“Hey,” she said timidly.

The girl that Winter was with looked over at me.  Her skin was pale and her dirty blonde hair seemed rough.

“I don’t mean to be rude but, who are you?” asked the girl.

I extended my hand and replied, “Spring and you?” The girl looked at me as if I came from a different planet. She glanced at Winter in a weird way. As if they had once been together.
She shook my hand and awkwardly replied, “I’m Summer.”

I gasped.  This was the girl.  The girl that Winter had once been with.  I pulled my hand away quickly and said, “What was that?”

She leaned in, closer, and repeated it louder and slower, as if she was speaking to a child, “Summer.”

 

 

 

“Winter” by Leo Russell and Sophie Alzona

Summer had lung cancer.  Why?  Why did this happen to me?  Why me?  I loved her.

“Hey,” she said, reaching for my hand. We were in the hospital; I was sitting on the cot in the white room while she was tucked into the covers.

I pulled my hand away with tears in my eyes. She looked so innocent lying on her hospital bed, she was barely able to breathe, probably. “I love you but,” I said as a tear rolled down my cheek, “I can’t be with you. Not today, not tomorrow, not ever. I’m sorry.”

Summer looked defeated. Guilt swelled up in my chest. It was the right thing to do. I loved her, but I didn’t feel the love anymore.

I quickly exited the hospital room, exiting Summer’s life as well.

Soon after, a girl named Spring walked into my life.  We had met in Science class, when these girls were bullying her.

“Omigosh, she’s so gay!  No girl in their right mind would like her back!”  one of them taunted.

“Stop,” she said calmly, but I could see tears forming in her eyes and barely spilling onto her cheeks, as one of them shoved her against the wall.

“Admit it,” another said.

Tears were now streaming clearly down her face.  “Shut up!” I yelled.  The group turned to look at me.

“What is your problem?” I cried.  “Why would you do that to her?”

The girl, who had stunning green eyes, looked up at me once the girls were gone.  “Why did you do that?” she asked, with quite a lot of courage.

“U-uh, I know what it’s like to be homosexual,” I stuttered, feeling my cheeks heating up.

“Okay,” she says, pulling me into a hug.  Once she pulls back, she says, “It’s okay.  I’m Spring, your average high school gay.”

I stick out my hand in what I hope is not a nerdy manner.  “I’m Winter.”

“See you around, Winter,” she says, shaking it.  She then turns and walks away, leaving me with a shocked expression on my face and a blush creeping up onto my cheeks.

A couple weeks later, I was with my friends at Starbucks.  Suddenly, the bell rang, and that same girl walked in.  The girl with dark mocha hair and bright green eyes.  Spring.

“Hey,” she said, noticing me, speaking in a loud voice.  “Aren’t you Winter?”

I made a shushing motion and then pointed to my friends.  “L-let’s go somewhere else,” I said quietly.

“Sure,” she drawled.

“Hey,” I said to my close friend, Ann, “I gotta go to the bathroom.”

“Sure,” Ann responded.  “Go hang with your girlfriend.  Just leave us here.”

“Thanks,” Spring said, either not understanding or not caring.  She grabbed my hand and pulled me over to another table.  “Stay here,” she said.  “I’m gonna go get an iced tea.”

She then left me standing there, staring at her skinny, black ripped jeans that hung super low on her waist, Fall Out Boy shirt, and stylish pinstripe scarf that she wore almost like a jacket.  Just staring.  Again.

“Hey,” she said when she got back.  “Want something?” She handed me five dollars, and I shoved it right back at her.

“N-no,” I said, trying to hide my stutter.  “Y-you don’t need to, uh, pay for me.  I can, um, uh, pay for myself.”

She just grinned, shoved the money back in her pocket, and sat down next to me, a little too close for comfort.

“U-uh,” I stuttered.  “I, um, like F-Fall Out Boy, too.”

“You wanna hang out sometime, other than now at a Starbucks? I mean, if you want to,” she rambled on.  “We can just sit and listen to music or something.  Only if you want.  I don’t want to make you come over, but if you want to?”

“S-sure,” I said.

A few months later, we met up for the fifth time, at my house.  My parents weren’t home.  As soon as I told her that, she started screaming and running around the house, throwing her stuff all over the floor.  We laughed and played around until she stopped suddenly, staring at me with those bright green eyes that I had grown to love.

“What?” I screeched, tossing a pillow at her.

“Nothing, nothing,” she said quickly, turning away.  Her phone buzzed and she looked down at it. “Huh.”

“What?” I asked, softer this time.

“I-I gotta go home,” she said.  This was the first time I had seen her flustered.

“Okay,” I said, understanding.  She didn’t want to hang out with me anymore.  Of course I had to blow it.

“It’s got nothing to do with you!” she said, reading my face.  “I really, really like you, Winter!  My dad just got fired, I’m really sorry.  Maybe you could come over next week, just not right now.  We could do something fun!”

“Sure,” I replied, weakly.  I had known her for a while now. Something was wrong, really wrong, but I still let her go.  “Okay.”

“Thank you so much,” she said, her voice tone changing.  “I’m so, so, sorry that this had to happen right now. I mean, I’m sorry.”  She looked down at the ground then kissed my cheek quickly.

“Bye!” she said.  She grabbed her stuff and left.

I couldn’t help worrying about her.

The next week, we didn’t meet up at all, unlike what she had suggested.  She barely looked up in the hallways, and when she did, she just sighed and looked down again.

When we got to Science class, all she did was take a seat as far as possible away from me and pull her knees up to her chest.

She was wearing an oversized blue sweater and a very short galaxy skirt that probably broke the dress code, along with white high-knee socks and black high-heeled loafers.  She had on a dark grey scarf that was almost black, that was styled in a double-knot, something she had shown me but I had never gotten.

In other words, she looked absolutely stunning.

I slowly walked over to her, holding my breath.  She looked over at me when I sat down in the seat next to her, dropping my binder onto the shared table with a clatter.

“What?” she said, turning away.

“N-n-nothing,” I responded, trying not to let my stutter show.

“It must be something,” she snapped, “if you walk all the way over here to sit next to me.”  She said her name like it was a dirty word.  I instantly felt bad for her and felt my madness fading away.

“I just wanted to see if you were okay,” I said, leaning in to wrap my arms around her.

“Go away!” she said.  “You’re already dating Summer and now I know it!”

I was shocked. “What?!” I cried.

“I think we need to talk this out,” she said without a trace of regret.  She tugged at my sleeve and pulled me outside.

“Sure,” I said, reluctantly.  She dragged me through the hallway, carefully drawing no attention.  She pulled her arm away after we had gotten outside.

“Follow me,” she said.

“Sure,” I said, “where are we going?  What are we doing?”

“The bench, skipping class.”

“Do you do this every day?”  I asked, scared for the answer.

“Nope,” she responded.  “You’re special.”  She tapped me on the nose and I reddened from her touch.  After I giggled, she recoiled, as though remembering something.

“Oh, y-yeah, about why you’re so cranky,” I started.

“I’ll talk to you about it if you listen.”

 

 

 

 

“A Monkey’s Nightmare” by Lucia Gutierrez

There was monkey who lived in a tree

He was very authentic and weak

He had bananas for breakfast and Bananas for lunch

And you guessed it, for dinner too

He lived in a tree high above

Alone but happy he had a great life

UNTIL

One-day poor monkey came home from his walk where he found tall men by his tree

One cut, two cut then there were three

No more was monkey’s tree

He felt lonely he felt depressed

He wanted to feel all better again

He smelt the cruel gases from the equipment of the men thickening second by second

Monkey tasted the sweet, tender taste of bananas in his mouth that was no more

Monkey was terrified of what he would have to do now

But all he did know was that he felt dead

 

 

“A Sound from Above” by Lucia Gutierrez  

There was a sound from above creeping every night

Louder and louder it grew

Annoyed by its presence

Angry for its returns

The sound was not kind

Everyday aggressive it grew

Stronger and infuriated

It rubbed of frustration,

Confusion,

Emotion and

Anger

Until one night it disappeared

High in the sky

Lost in the world

The sound that was once horrific became

MISSED

When the realization was that the sound

Was what made the peace

 

“The Bad Feeling” by Lucia Gutierrez  

The fog drifting from all angles was blinding me like a deer in the headlights

Every breath I inhaled filled me with a dark feeling of desperately

I could feel walls around me caving in slowly like a sloth reaching for his dinner, a leaf

I heard loud sirens whirring all around me

I could smell the grueling and murderous smell of gases lingering

I could see darkness from miles away

I thought I wasn’t thinking straight, unsure of what I was doing or where I was

I felt eager to get out of this world

Then I woke up

 

“MY SIDE OF THE SUPER STORY” by Rachel K. Carter        

RING! RING! Went the last bell of the day. “Finally!” I whispered to myself as I headed out the door of my 6th period health class. Health class was my least favorite of all my classes, and I think EVERYONE agreed. At least I didn’t get stuck with clean up job this time. I left class in a hurry, and by the time I got to my locker on the 3rd floor I realized that I left my library book on my desk in health class on the 1st floor. I groaned and headed back to health class with my backpack that said, “Girls rule! Property of Sid,” resting on one shoulder.

By the time I got to the 1st floor I noticed that everyone had already left for home. “Great!” I thought to myself, “Nothing like being the creepy kid who stays after school just creepin’ around.” When I got to the door of my health class I heard a voice coming from inside. I stopped and stood under the door frame.

“Ugh! Why can’t the janitor just do her own job and clean up the classroom, and why did the teacher have to assign me clean up job on a Friday afternoon when he could have done it perfectly fine by himself?!” Oh yeah, the teacher had given the new girl the clean-up job.

I felt kind of bad for her, so I decided to ask her if she wanted some help. I mean she was the new girl after all and that’s hard enough itself. I was about to walk in when I saw the weirdest thing in the entire world . . .

I SAW A BOOK FLOAT ACROSS THE ROOM BY ITSELF!!!

I was so shocked when I saw this that it took me a second to realize that it was my library book (I could tell because it had a green flower on it). I leaned against the cold wall just outside of the doorframe. I was terrified, stupefied; I didn’t know how to react. Then I remembered, the new girl was in there. I wanted to run but I knew there was no way that I could let her get attacked by some floating book! So as quietly as I could, I leaned my head into the classroom. I saw her in the corner facing away from me organizing some books, oblivious that I was even there. The floating book was traveling toward her now only arm’s length away. I was about to warn her, but then the second weirdest thing I’ve seen today happened, she held out her hand and the book landed on it! A few seconds later the new girl started singing quietly, “It may be hard keepin’ my secret but when you got powers it be a treat oh yeah!” Suddenly, I blurted out a very loud, “WHAT?!”

The new girl whipped around, the terror on her face that matching mine. “How much did you see?” she asked me trembling.

“I didn’t see anything,” I lied, wanting nothing more than to be far away from here. “How much did you see?” she asked, this time with more force. I didn’t answer her. I just ran.

 

*****

 

PART 2

I breathed hard. I sweated like I never had before in my life. I was also pretty sure I was going to throw up. I was running down the halls lost trying to find an exit. I rounded a corner and nearly screamed. It was the new girl. I quickly turned around and saw an exit at the end of the hall. I bolted toward it.

“Wait! Please!” the new girl cried. I turned around briefly and yelled, “NEVER!”

While I was turned around I saw her stick out her hand and suddenly my left foot wouldn’t leave the ground.

“AAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!” I screamed as I hit the ground with a hard thud.

“Oh my gosh!” cried the new girl as she came closer to me. “I am so sorry. I didn’t mean to hurt you!”

“GET AWAY FROM ME!” I yelled at her. The new girl took a step back with shock. I realized that I probably sounded really rude.

“I’m sorry,” I said to her.

“It’s fine,” she said. “I’m used to it. Are you okay?”

I just realized that I couldn’t feel or move my left foot from my ankle down. It didn’t hurt. I don’t feel like I went into shock like when you break a bone. It was just stiff, really stiff.

“What did you do to my foot?” I asked her while trying to move it side to side. “I’m not really sure,” she replied, “but whatever I did I’m sorry.”

“It’s okay; it doesn’t hurt. I’m Sid by the way,” I said holding out my hand.

“Jaylin,” she replied and helped me up.

“Can you walk?” Jaylin asked me as I tried to get my balance back.

“Not really,” I answered her as I swayed back and forth. Jaylin held onto my arm so I wouldn’t fall over.

“When do you think the shock will wear off?” I asked.

“When do you think the shock will wear off?” I asked.

“I don’t know; I’ve never done this before,” she answered.

“What have you done?”

“Well so far I have been able to move small objects with my mind,” Jaylin answered me as she picked up my backpack that fell on the ground when I “tripped,” and started walking to the door, her arm around my shoulder so that I could stand.

“Wow, that is so cool!” I exclaimed.

“It’s okay,” said Jaylin, “So when is your mom or dad coming?”

“I walk home. Both my parents work,” I said. “Although I do have a fifteen-year-old sister who is probably celebrating me not coming home.”

“Hey, at least you have someone to hang with, my parents also work and I’m an only child.”

“Do they know about your powers?” I asked.

“Yes, but they don’t act all weird about it. They actually ask me to use my powers once in a while which really helps me gain control.”

“Hey do you think your parents will let you come over to my house?” I asked. “My parents said it was okay for me to have up to three guests at my house and go to friends’ houses once a week as long as none of them were boys,” I said. We stood by the car pick up lane.

“I’ll have to ask first, but I think they’ll be okay with it,” said Jaylin as she took out her phone and called her dad. I heard the phone ring and then heard the bits of the conversation that Jaylin was saying, “Hi dad, I was wondering if I could go over to a new friend’s house… she lives, um one second. Where do you live?” she asked me. I told her my address and she repeated it to her dad.

“Okay, Dad, I’ll be careful… she, uh already knows… okay talk to you later. Love you. Bye.”

“Can you come?” I asked hopefully.

Jaylin smiled. “Yes!” she said excitedly.

“Great! Wait a minute, do you have my library book?”

“The one with the green flower on it?”

I nodded my head.

“I, uh, I left it in the classroom,”

I stood silently for a few seconds then said, “Okay come on let’s go get my book, but seriously if I see Wonder Women I’m going to lose it!”

“More than when you saw me?” said Jaylin with a grin from ear to ear.

“Maybe,” I replied as we both headed for the school Jaylin still supporting me.

*****

PART 3

“Are you hungry?” I asked Jaylin as I went through the refrigerator drawers, in the kitchen at my house, still balancing on one foot from when Jaylin stunted it.

“I’m good thanks,” replied Jaylin, “Hey, do you think that I could try to un-stun your foot?”

“I don’t see why not,” I said hopping over to where Jaylin was with a water bottle in my hand.

I sat down facing across from Jaylin at my family breakfast bar with my stunned foot resting on the seat between us. Jaylin extended her hand a little bit in front of her concentrating on my foot. Suddenly Jaylin got a weird look on her face and started going, “Ah . . .  ah . . .”

I was about to reach for a tissue at the end of the counter but it was too late.

Jaylin let out a loud sneeze. Then out of the blue, the top of my water bottle shot off and water started squirting everywhere!

“I’m so sorry!” said Jaylin reaching for a paper towel, “That happens sometimes with my powers.”

“WHAT THE HECK SID!?!” screamed my older sister Martha as she came downstairs looking for the source of the loud sneeze that came from Jaylin a second ago.

“What happened? Where did all this water come from? What powers? Sid you are in SO much trouble if you don’t answer me!”

“How can I when I don’t know what you want the answer to?” I said hoping she forgot about the super power question.

“Fine then! First I want to know were all this water came from,” demanded Martha.

“I spilled it, sorry, I’ll clean it up,” Jaylin answered.

“I also want to know who the heck this stranger is!” yelled Martha

“I’m Jaylin, Sid’s friend,” said Jaylin then looked over at me with a ‘was it okay that I said that?’ look on her face. I smiled in return.

“Really? I didn’t think that Sid would ever have any friends,” said Martha, “Especially if you knew that her real name is-”

“DON’T YOU DARE MARTHA!” I yelled.

“Sid’s not your real name?” asked Jaylin.

“Sid is my nickname,” I said.

“SECOND OF ALL!” Martha started again, “What was that obnoxiously loud sound?”

“That was also me, sorry again,” said Jaylin.

“Also what powers? What are you talking about?” asked Martha.

“What are you talking about? Powers! That’s ridiculous!” said Jaylin convincingly. Wow Jaylin is a great actor. She would have totally convinced me that I was hearing things if I hadn’t seen her powers with my own eyes!

“Fine then! I guess I’ll just check the Cat Cam!” said Martha.

I gasped. Jaylin looked confused. Martha saw the confusion on Jaylin’s face and explained, “The Cat Cam is a hidden camera in the kitchen that used to be for Captain Fluffy, the cat we had a few years ago, and we never took it down after Captain Fluffy went to live with our Grandma Sally.”

Now it was Jaylin’s turn to gasp. Martha turned to leave the kitchen when she stopped dead in her tracks nearly falling over, “What the heck!” yelled Martha, “I can’t move!”

I looked over at Jaylin who had an extended arm and a smile on her face.

“Please lets me go! I won’t tell anyone about your powers! I promise!” Martha begged. I looked over at Jaylin. Jaylin said, “Okay fine, but seriously you need to be way nicer to Sid! She’s super nice to you-”

“Trust me I’m not,” I said to Jaylin.

“Okay, I’ll be nicer to Sid,” said Martha giving us a half smile, “and your secret is safe with me.” Then Martha left and me and Jaylin let out a sigh of relief as we started to clean up the spilled water.

“Hey, I can feel my foot again!” I pointed out happily to Jaylin.

“That’s great!” said Jaylin. Suddenly I heard a buzzing sound come from Jaylin’s pocket. Jaylin pulled out her phone and told me her parents wanted her home now, “Bye!” I said.

“Bye,” Jaylin echoed and left.

Well, I thought, all’s well that ends well. That is unless you now have to delete all of what just happened off of the Cat Cam and do all of your homework before Mom and Dad come home. I’m going to have a busy night ahead of me.