By Zahra Clarke , Staff Writer


There was nothing in sight but the vast sand that stretched across the horizon. But she refused to give up. She was to find the man that would help save her people. Her family. She walked and walked, only to be met with the same sand. She took one more step, only to hear a click from the ground.

Looking down toward the sound, she brushed the sand away to reveal the metal beneath. I know it’s dumb to knock on metal, but when you’re desperate, you’re desperate, she thought. This has to be the way to the magic men the church and the people in my village talked about, she thought before she dusted off the sand to reveal a metal square like nothing she had ever seen before. She brushed her hand against the metal to make out the words on it. They were old, worn out like many people like her had rubbed or even scratched at the metal. The traveler mumbled the words to herself. She could not help but be entranced by those words.

Then the ground began to quake around her and the sand 10 meters away rose until she could no longer see the sun. In the sand’s place stood a massive castle. Despite her hesitation, she walked toward the door and did what any civilized person in her situation would do: she knocked on the door. Once, twice, three times. Met with silence, beautiful and perfect silence, she slowly opened the door and stepped inside the castle.

When she did, everything lit up within. A clear ball was glowing above her, attached to the ceiling. She wondered how this could be, as the only light she knew originated from the sun and the candle her mother would light when she had her nightmares. She walked up the staircase that led to another landing. She passed dozens of clear balls with their light, appearing as though fire was inside. But how could anyone keep fire in a ball and how could they make in in all of these balls like that? She thought in fascination.

She leaned across the railing, reaching her hand out to take the familiar spheres. Perhaps in a dream she had seen them before, but she didn’t know nor did she care. As she leaned even further, her footing faltered and suddenly she was falling away from the fireballs and through the air. She closed her eyes, waiting for the impact. But she didn’t feel the ground, instead, a body. She slowly opened her eyes only to see…