Redmond Rogers & the Riches of Life

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Back on the island

“We are feeling weak as the magic flow has been disturbed. We need to be ready for what we may see when we find the children”.

“I don’t understand” Isabel said looking at Celine and then at all of us shaking her head.

“Well as you can see we fairies are feeling weaker, which is a clear sign the magic has been disturbed. Now what concerns me is the children here on the island are children, but as they have not aged in eighty years” she said turning to the fairies and then back to us she continued “well the children may have aged in the time since you were here, when the magic flow was interrupted”.

Rachael and Isabel gasped and looked at each other with their hands over their mouths.

“We better hurry and find them” I said. “What is it we have to do to restore the power of the crystals Celine” as I looked at Celine and to the other fairies?

“Well firstly we need to find the children on the island and then we need to use your book to restore the power as it should be. I think the book will guide us” she said trying to assure us that everything was going to be alright. She looked puzzled and worried and it made me think if any of this was going to work. Was I ever going to return to Kendall Springs?

Simon and I led the way and walked away from the tunnel and the others followed behind us. We followed a pathway that was made of sand and there were a lot of rocks on either side of the pathway. I caught up to Simon and asked “Why did you pick this path? And he replied “Easy, it’s the bigger path, therefore it must lead to a big area”. It seemed logical and I hoped he was right.

As we walked along the pathway I could hear noise in the distance. Music. It was music being played. I looked at Simon and he nodded and said “That must be them. Remember what Isabel said about them dancing to some sort of music”.

Isabel came forward to walk with us and said “Can you hear it? The music. We must be getting close”.

We all walked on with Rachael and Michael right behind us and the fairies hovering around us to the left. The pathway grew wider and the rocks appeared to be a lot bigger the further we walked. They almost resembled small mountains, but not quite.

We reached an open area and found it was surrounded by lots of the big trees we had seen on the pathway the last time we had been on the island. My first thought was that these must be the tree houses the children live in. From the outside they looked like ordinary trees, but I knew once you stepped inside, the trees were a home inside and really big with separate rooms. It was very clever and part of the magic of the island.

There they were just up ahead in front of us. It seemed as if they were doing some sort of dance as they all stood in a circle and danced.

The fairies hovered and flew in front of us and signalled that they would go ahead of us now.

I looked at Simon and then at the others and we walked a little slower than what we had in the tunnel. We weren’t really sure what to expect.

As we got close enough for the children to see us, they all stopped dancing and looked over straight at us. They recognised the fairies and came running towards the fairies and us.

There were two men and two women who walked towards us with all the children behind them. Then I noticed a couple more women at the back of the kids, but they were all walking in our direction.

Once they had got close enough, they all stopped and the two men came forward.

Celine and Lou Lou were standing on their feet now and the other fairies hovered down to stand with them.

Celine looked back at us and then turned to face the others and said “Rick and Alan and everybody, I would like to introduce you to some very special people”. She turned and looked at us smiling and nodded to us to step forward.

I stepped forward and looked to the others to join me. They all stepped forward and we walked over to shake Rick and Alan’s hands.

“Pleased to meet you” I said as I shook their hands and then looked over at the children. I noticed Gretel walking towards the front of the other kids and smile and take my hand and shake it.

Rick nodded and turned to the others and said “This is Pam and Susie. They use to be air hostesses on the plane that we flew, but that was a long time ago and now we are all very happy here. Then he looked at another two women and pointed and said “this is Sally-Ann and this is Melinda. They are teachers. Please don’t tell us that you have come to take the children away” as he looked around at all of us.

Celine went to Rick and said “These children have a special gift, but there has been a little misfortune and the gift has been tarnished. We need to restore the power of the crystals, so they can return home” and she looked back at us to acknowledge that this was in fact correct. We all looked at her and nodded in agreement and I confirmed stating

“We represent the power of the elements, but we need to restore the magic of these powers. Are you able to help us” I asked?

“That would explain why the food hasn’t been replenishing itself in the last two weeks” said Sally-Ann looking at the fairies. “We have noticed the food doesn’t replenish like it always has and wondered what had changed.” She looked at us all and said “What is it that you need to do to restore this power or magic” she asked?

Celine spoke first and said “We need to find the tree house that has the secret trap door”.

The other fairies looked at Celine like they didn’t understand what she was saying. “Whatever do you mean” asked Iris?

I was looking at Celine and then at the other fairies and then at my friends to try and work out what she meant.

“It is written. Check the book of magic Red” she looked at me and before I had a chance to say anything, Simon reached for the backpack and got the book out.

Simon knelt down and I knelt down beside him. He opened the book and flicked through page after page until he stopped and pointed. “Here” he said “Look, Celine is right” as he continued to read and point at what he had found. It was simply titled ‘Remedy to a lost power’ and I wasn’t really sure I understood. Simon may be clumsy at times but he was very smart and I had no doubt he had found what we needed. He has his finger on the page and read “if you seek to restore the power you require, you must enter the door in the floor” he looked at me and then up at the others who were standing right next to us.

Rachael looked at Simon and said “Well Celine is right. A door in the floor and Celine said the tree house with a trap door in the floor. That must be it” and she looked to Celine who was still standing with Rick and Alan.

Gretel stepped forward to where we were kneeling on the ground and said “there is no tree house with a secret trap door. I have been in all the houses and have never seen a secret door”.

“Just because you have never seen one, does not mean there isn’t one to be found” Celine said smiling and patting her on the head. “We must go to each tree house and look until we find the trapdoor”.

I stood up and Simon continued looking at the book and flicking through pages to see if there was anything else. “Winnie sure didn’t make it too easy for us with this book” he said as he closed the book and stood up. He put the book back in the backpack that was still on my back and said “So now we must start searching each tree house”.

Rick looked at the other children and said “I think Gretel would be more than happy to take you to each house. No one here would object to that”. He looked at Gretel and said “now when you find this secret trap door, I would like for you to come back and tell us which person’s tree house it is and they can come back with you”.

I looked at Rick and said “Thank you. We won’t disturb anything unless there is a mat on the floor that may need to be moved, but if there is, we will put it back where we found it”.

Rick turned to the children and the other adults and said “It’s time to feast on some fine food and dance some more” and the children cheered and ran back to where they had been dancing before we had interrupted them.

Rick and Alan were still standing in front of us and smiled and turned and walked back towards the dance area and a long table that I hadn’t noticed before. It was filled with plates of food and drink containers.

Simon looked at me and whispered “they are all so friendly & they all seem so happy” and we laughed trying to imagine if they could every fight as they seemed so happy.

I thought to myself that maybe that is part of the magic of the island. There seems to be only happiness and with plenty of food, so there is no need to fight.

The fairies came with us and hovered on our right as we walked with Gretel along the sandy pathway towards the trees. It wasn’t long before we reached the winding pathway with trees on either side. Gretel looked at me and said “I think we should start here”.

Looking along the pathway I couldn’t imagine how many tree houses were here and how long it was going to take before we found the one with the secret trap door. There were a lot of trees here and they all looked the same. I looked at Gretel and said “Are all these trees, well you know are they all tree houses?” she laughed and said “No, silly. There are only some. You will see. I will show you and she walked straight over to a tree and turned the handle.

Simon and Michael followed Gretel inside and the girls and I were right behind them. Once inside I looked around on the floor for any kind of floor rug that may be hiding a secret trap door.

The girls looked around on the right side of the house and Simon and Michael had already gone over on the left side. I stood in the middle and looked towards the winding stairs. I can’t imagine there would be a secret trap door up there, but I will go and check it anyway. I guess we all figure it is a door in the floor, but it could be the floor upstairs. I walked up the winding steps to the upstairs area and had a look around. It was a comfy home with two beds and no rug on the floor. I turned around to walk back downstairs when Simon yelled out “There is nothing in this one. Let’s go to the next one”.

Once I had joined the others back downstairs, we all headed straight for the door and onto the next tree house.

After going through the next two tree houses, we had all developed a routine. The girls always went to the right, while Simon and Michael went to the left, leaving me to take the stairs and check upstairs. Gretel stayed downstairs and helped the others downstairs, but we were not finding any secret trap door.

Gretel was happily skipping along the pathway in between each tree house and I realised after going through a couple that not all of these trees were homes. Some of them were in fact just trees. There was no door on the outside. Gretel was right. Not all of them were tree houses. We continued on the pathway and checked tree house after tree house and came up with nothing.

Once we had checked the last tree house on the pathway Gretel turned to me and said “There are no more tree houses”.

I looked at her and said “think Gretel if there is anywhere else that could have a secret trap door. Is there any other tree houses around here that aren’t on the pathway” I asked?

She looked at me and then at the others and then down at the ground. I don’t think there was any other place that we were going to find a secret trap door. What if we had missed it.

“We are going to have to go back and look again” said Michael “It has to be in one of them. Where else would a secret door in the floor be” he asked?

Isabel came over to where I was standing with Michael and Gretel and looked at Gretel and said “What about the tree house where you do your dancing? That is where I was locked up when I first came to the island” she looked at me and nodded and then turned to Gretel and said “Can you lead us back to that tree house. That could be it” as she looked at me and then at the others.

We all followed Isabel and Gretel along the pathway back to the beached area where we had been earlier.

Once we got back Rick and Alan came over and I knew they were going to ask if we had found the secret trapdoor, but they could tell from our faces that we had not found anything.

Gretel said excitedly “Can we please go to the big tree house? We haven’t checked in there”.

Rick nodded and before saying anything else we all followed Gretel along the narrow sandy pathway that led to an opening and there before us was a large tree. This tree looked bigger than the other tree houses we had seen.

Gretel started running over to the rope step ladder that led up to the tree house. This was different to the other tree houses. We had to use a rope ladder to get to the door. Once we had all climbed to the top of the rope and entered the tree house we all began looking around as we had done in all the other homes we had been in. This one was different. There was a large room, almost like a meeting room and a table and chairs on the left side. The table had a large bowl full of fruit and there were plates neatly stacked next to it.

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