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The Tunnel (by Nina Mayer)
Vacation! Jessy and Emily got out of school and were making plans for their vacation. The little State of Maryland was so exciting especially to Emily, who came from Florida. The only one who didn’t laugh was Sarah-Melisse called Sally. She had bad grades and will have to repeat the class. Her parents were very strict. She had to study much and wasn’t allowed to go out in the afternoon. Even at school she didn’t laugh much and she was never looking forward to getting home. Anyway, Jessy liked her although they couldn’t ever meet up with her in the afternoon. So the three girls got on the bus.”We could go shopping. You could show me Baltimore!” said Emily, but Jessy didn’t like the idea very much:”One can tell that you’re not from here! There aren’t any nice shops around here.” “Next station South Street” the bus driver’s voice announced. “That’s where I have to get out. Tomorrow at my house?” Jessy asked. She knew that Sally would come, but it won’t be easy to survive that day.” My parents won’t be home after 10 am. As soon as they’ll be out of the house I’ll leave and meet up with you!” The girls said goodbye to Jessy. Emily was the next to leave the bus and Sally was alone now. Suddenly the bus driver whispered:”Sarah-Melisse van Appalake, you and your friends won’t last here!” Then the bus stopped and the young girl left the bus. While she was walking home she, once again, got more and more frightened of her parents.
When she rang the doorbell her hands were shaking and her knees were weak. It was a terrible feeling. Her parents were very, very mean and she wasn’t allowed to leave the house during her vacation. Her parents were sure that she couldn’t get out because they had cameras everywhere in and around the house to protect it from thieves. The next morning Sally woke up because her alarm rang at six o’clock. Her mother told her that she had to study after breakfast. She had to hurry up. After her parents were gone, Sally did her little performance through the house. She was creeping on the floor, and then she had to climb on the ceiling. Finally she left the house through a window. She had to be very careful so that the cameras didn’t film her.
When Sally went out of the garden, she ran through the streets until she reached Emily’s house. Her friend was already waiting for her. Now the two girls ran to the bus station and hopped on the bus. When the girls got out, they still had to walk a bit because the morning bus didn’t stop everywhere. They rang Jessie’s doorbell and she came out: ”OK, let’s do it! Let’s visit Baltimore! There are some nice places, too.” And they went along all together. Suddenly Emily noticed an ivy plant next to the street. The girls took a closer look, and at first it seemed as if there was absolutely nothing behind the ivy. “A tunnel!” shouted Jessy. ”It seems to be long!” she shouted excitedly. The girls weren’t sure whether they should go inside the tunnel or stay outside of it. In the end it was Emily who decided not to go inside. Sally didn’t want to go in there, neither. But Jessy was very disappointed; she really wanted to know what was inside the tunnel.
Suddenly Sally saw her parent’s car passing by: “Oh dear, my parents! There, in this big black car! They didn’t see me, but they’ll be home soon. Sorry, I must leave now!” When Sally ran away, Emily and Jessy didn’t really know what to do. ”It’s boring without Sally!” Emily complained. ”I’ve got an idea. Let’s see what’s inside!” said Jessy, but Emily knew that it was too dangerous. “It could collapse, Jessy!” she warned her. And after they had made bets on which teachers they would have next year, Emily wanted to return back home. ”Let’s meet tomorrow at 9 am in Baltimore and let’s go home now.” Jessy didn’t say a word. “Don’t you want to go home Jessy?” Emily asked. But Jessy wanted to stay there for some time, so Emily left.
The next morning when Sally was just studying for school, she suddenly saw Emily in front of her house. Sarah-Melisse took her trash box and went out. ”I just bring the trash out!” “We’ll go shopping now. Bye!” her parents said and left the house.”Sally opened the window and shouted: “Hide yourself! I’ll be outside in a few minutes!” When her parents were out of sight, Sarah-Melisse went outside, too. She called Emily who came out from a bush: “Who was that? Your parents?” she asked.”Yes. What’s going on?” Sally wanted to know. Emily told her that Jessy wasn’t at home although they wanted to meet up. “Jessy’s mother told me that she thought she was at my house, but of course she isn’t. I’m really worried!”Emily explained to Sally. So they both started to look for their friend, but she was nowhere to be found. Suddenly Emily had an idea: “Jessy was very disappointed that we didn’t want to go into the tunnel yesterday. Maybe she decided to go in there alone. Yesterday she wanted to stay there when I went home!” So Emily and Sally went back to the tunnel.
They were right, there she was! “Help, help!” she cried,” I cannot get out!” Sarah-Melisse and Emily were shocked. They advised Jessy to crawl, but their imprisoned friend told them that there was a big glass wall and nothing to break it. Sally and Emily decided to help Jessy by going down to her with the help of a root and by breaking the wall. When they reached Jessy, there was no glass wall anymore. ”The wall is gone! Let’s go outside!” Sally said nervously and they tried to leave the tunnel. But suddenly they stood in front of a big glass wall.
They tried to break it with the root, but the wall was too thick. They turned around and walked into the other direction of the tunnel. After a few minutes, Jessy, Sally, and Emily saw light at the end of the tunnel and ran towards it.
When they came out they saw things they’d never seen before: Bright colors, big green trees, blue water. Everything was clear, without a big, dark cloud in the sky. It didn’t seem to be a place from this world. Suddenly a little girl welcomed them: “Welcome to Merryland! Are you here to help us?” The three girls didn’t know what to say: “Well, we’re from Maryland. We went into the tunnel and…now we are here! So you need help with this cloud, don’t you?” asked Jessy. More and more people came and told them that the cloud was the smell of their king who wants his people to like him, but in fact he was a cruel and very powerful man who ate people. Since he had been king in Maryland, all fun was missing. Jessy, Emily and Sally went deeper and deeper into Merryland until they couldn’t see anything. Sally was thinking of the mysterious bus driver. She noticed that Merryland wasn’t Maryland and realized that only people who lived there could smell the smell of their king. They were told that they could only go home when the king wasn’t in power any more.
When Sally told her friends about it, they made a plan to chase away the king. They kept walking on for some hours through the fog of smell, when they reached a castle. It was really scary, but Jessy, Emily, and Sally nevertheless opened the door. It was even brighter than outside, but when they opened the next door, there was the fog again - and the king. He opened his mouth, but Jessy and her friends couldn’t hear him, so they started their plan. They kicked the king out of his castle and carried him far, far away. Two days later, they were still walking, but in the end they let him down and threw some leaves over him.
Suddenly everything became even brighter than before and the king was gone- there was just fresh air left now. Sally, Jessy, and Emily went back towards the direction they came from and in the evening they arrived back at the place where they first discovered this new world. Jessy and Emily ran towards the tunnel, but Sally got slower and slower, when she finally stopped: “I’ll stay here! I have a feeling that this is my real home, the dream world.” She turned around and went back to the other members of Merryland while her friends went into the tunnel and came out in the street where they found Jessy. And Sally was gone forever.
In the evening both girls were dreaming of Merryland. They thought about Sally whom they saw laughing for the first time in her life, whom they saw running and singing, whom they finally saw being happy. Sally was right, Merryland was the land where all dreams are made.
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The princess and the Frog King II (by Katharina Theil)
Once upon a very long time, there was a princess that had found her prince. I think you all know the story about the princess and the Frog King, don't you? Well, and now the princess and the prince (who once was a frog because he had been bewitched) wanted to get married within a few days.
But in the morning of their wedding day, the prince wasn't there anymore. Everybody was looking for him and the whole village was out on the streets in order to look for him, but nobody could find him. The princess cried badly because she was badly in love with her prince. In the evening the princess received a letter:
If you want to marry your prince you have to search for him! If you don't find him within 48 hours he will stay a frog forever!"
The princess was shocked. She packed her bag with a bottle of water, a jacket, and the letter and immediately went on a trip by herself. She had been walking for a long time. She passed seven mountains, so high, that she couldn't walk anymore. When she got to a little house she knocked on the door. A little man opened it just a little bit and screamed: “We don't want to buy anything!“ “But I won't sell you anything!“ the princess replied. “Oh, really? I’m very sorry, I thought you were one of these merchants...Who are you and why are you knocking at my door?“ The little man opened the door a bit more and came out. “I come from a little village and I had been walking for days because I'm looking for my boyfriend. I'm dog-tired and hungry. I need a place to sleep!“ the princess said. “OK. Come on in!“ the little man replied and waved her into the house. “These are my brothers!“ the man pointed at six other little men, who sat on the floor. “We are dwarfs!“ said one “that's why we’re so small.“ “What are you doing here?“ asked another. The princess told them her story.
“May I see the letter?“ a dwarf wanted to know. The princess took the paper out of her backpack and showed it to him. “It's what I thought... your prince is under the spell of the witch who lives in the forest!“ “We'll help you finding her!“ one said happily. They all ate dinner together and then they went to bed.
The next morning they got up early and made their way to the witch. The dwarfs were singing songs and the princess told them some stories until they finally arrived at a house, that was made out of gingerbread and sweets. “There it is! The house of the witch!“ Next to the house there was a cage with a little boy inside. The dwarfs and the princess ran to the boy. “Help me, please!“ he whispered. “I'm Hänsel and me and my sister and the frog are prisoners here. The princess answered: “Don’t worry, we'll help you!“
“Shhhhhh... you have to be quiet! The old witch might hear us! The key for the cage is over there!“ he pointed at a stone in front of the house. Suddenly the door opened. The witch screamed: “What are you doing?“ The dwarf threw the key to the others, grabbed the witch and the princess opened the cage. The little men quickly ran towards the witch and put her into ties. Hänsel screamed: “Gretel, froggy, come out!“ and his sister came out with the Frog Prince in her hands. They put the witch into the oven and ran away.
The princess was so happy that she kissed the frog a hundred times and -what a surprise- he turned into a human prince again!
A few weeks later the couple married and invited the seven dwarfs and Hänsel and Gretel to their wedding, too. And they all lived happily ever after.