Back to normal
Once I was in my room I looked around and everything was as I had left it. The big bed with the curtains hanging down were now gone and it was my bed as I had previously left it. It seemed things were back to normal and it had worked. I still wasn’t sure why it had happened, but was happy to be back home and quickly changed and took a shower before returning back to the kitchen with Mum.
Mum had meatloaf that she had just taken from the oven and had steamed some vegetables to eat with it. She was slicing the meatloaf when I walked in so I went straight to the kitchen drawers to get cutlery to set the table.
She smiled and continued slicing the meatloaf “Could you serve the vegetables from the steamer please Redmond” I asked?
Without answering I nodded and after setting the table I went over to the stove and noticed the vegetables sitting in the steamer ready to be served. It seemed I had got back just in time for dinner, but it doesn’t explain that Mum thought I had been gone for only the day. I knew I had been gone for days. Maybe time didn’t move on the island or the mysterious magical place we had been and that was why it seemed only the day here. It was very odd and I’m sure we would all be talking about it at school tomorrow.
I got two plates from the cupboard and began spooning the vegetables onto each plate after Mum had placed slices of meatloaf on them.
We sat at the table and began eating when Mum looked at me and said “So you and your friends went to that cave at the beach. I presume the tide was out and you walked into the cave then” she asked?
“Yeah, the tide was out and there was only sand, so it was easy to walk straight in” I said looking at her to see her reaction. She nodded and continued to eat “Was there anything exciting in there” she asked me?
Oh boy if only she really knew, but I knew there was no way I could tell her. All of us had promised not to tell anyone including our parents.
So I said “We walked around for a while and found there was a small river on one side, but not much else, so we just hung out at the beach for the day”.
“Sounds like you have all had a wonderful day. I am so happy you have made some nice friends Redmond and it makes me feel even better that I made the right decision moving from Cookeville. It’s like having a fresh start and no-one knows what life was like for us back there, so it is wonderful to hear you have made some nice friends”.
“Thanks Mum” I said “I really do like them and they are really nice to hang out with”. We continued to eat our dinner in silence. It was a nice silence though and occasionally Mum would look at me and just smile. She looked much more at ease since we had moved to Kendall Springs and knowing that we had a fresh start and that I had made some friends was probably confirming that she had made the right choice. I sure had no regrets and was more than happy to stay here in Kendall Springs.
After dinner I helped Mum with the dishes and told her I was going to study in my room for a while before going to bed. She didn’t question me and gave me a kiss on the forehead and I went up to my room.
Once I was in my room I took the pirate ship picture down from the wall and took out the picture of the map. This is where it had all begun and now I wondered if the island was the purpose of this map or if there was in fact treasure that we hadn’t even come across. Or maybe the crystals were the treasure. After removing the map from behind the print I unfolded it and neatly laid it out on my desk. It was exactly how I remembered and there was only a cross marked. The skull seemed to indicate where the treasure was, but that was where we had fallen and landed on the island. It didn’t make sense or maybe that was the idea, so it was hard to find like the fairies had told us with the portal being hidden.
I put the map safely back behind the print and returned the picture back to the wall and got ready for bed. It had been a huge adventure and I’m sure we would all be talking about it again tomorrow at school.
I woke the next morning and looked around realising I was in my own bed at home in Kendall Springs. I couldn’t remember how many days we had been gone and the last time I had managed a full night’s sleep. I barely remember my head touching the pillow and sleep claimed me very easily.
I got out of bed and went to the bathroom and brushed my teeth and got dressed for school. I went down the stairs and realised I seemed to have a lot of bounce in me this morning and I seemed almost too eager to get out of the house and to school to see the others again.
Mum was in the kitchen and had cereal bowls at the table and milk and juice waiting for me. “Good morning Mum” I said and she turned and replied “Good morning Redmond. Did you sleep well” she asked?
“I slept like a log” I said with a giggle and sat at the table to pour some cereal into my bowl. I ate quickly and grabbed my lunch from the kitchen bench and leaned over to Mum to say goodbye before grabbing my bag and heading out the door for school.
I walked quickly eager to get to school and see how the others went with their families. Had time really stood still and they thought we had only been gone for a day.
It wasn’t long and I saw Simon walking towards me and he was smiling and almost started running to catch up to me. “They think we were only at the beach for the day” he burst out as soon as he was close enough for me to hear.
I started to nod and said “Mum thinks we all spent the day at the beach and went and explored inside the cave and just hung out. She thinks we were only gone for that day, which I guess means the Sunday that we left. Does that mean time stood still pretty much for the whole time we were gone” I asked?
“Well that’s the only thing that kind of made any sense to me, although I’m not sure how. Maybe it’s part of the magic of the island and the crystals” Simon finished.
We continued to walk towards school and once we reached the gate began looking around for the others. Simon spotted the girls and pointed to where they were standing. Normally they would always be playing hopscotch, but today they were standing there and talking quietly to themselves.
As we walked closer towards them we saw Michael who was standing just behind them and he stepped out as soon as he saw us.
“Has time stood still for you too” he asked as he looked at both of us?
I looked around to see if anyone else could hear and nodded and said “Mum thinks we all hung out at the beach for the day. Only one day”.
The girls looked at me and then back to Michael and Rachael said “These crystals have some amazing power. Barely any time had passed and we were gone for days” as she looked to Isabel to confirm what she was saying.
We all stood there taking in the fact that we had been gone for days, yet our families believed we had only been gone for that one day. The bell rang and we headed for class.
The morning went by rather slowly as I think we were all eager to talk more about what we had been through and the fact that no-one knew we had been gone for days. Miss Have could see that I was not really paying full attention in class and kept glaring at myself and Simon.
The bell rang for lunch and we all met in the school yard and couldn’t stop talking about the island and the journey we had been on and yet it seemed no-one here thought anything otherwise.
We all met outside near the hopscotch area and ate our lunch in silence. Simon couldn’t finish my sandwich quick enough and turned to me and asked “so when are we going back”?
I looked to the others before turning to Simon and said “Maybe we should stay in Kendall Springs for the week and perhaps on the weekend we can meet up again”.
Miss Have came over to where we were sitting and asked “How was your weekend? You two seem a little distracted in class this morning” as she looked at Simon and then at me.
“The weekend was just like any other weekend” Simon replied, but Miss Have looked at us knowing there was probably more.
I added “we went to the beach with our friends and spent the day there” while looking at the others for them to confirm that was what we had done.
The others nodded while continuing to eat their lunch hoping Miss Have would walk away, but she took a seat next to Michael and said “What exactly did you do at the beach” she asked?
Michael was looking very nervous and continued eating his lunch nodding his head and looking at me. I looked at Miss Have and said “we explored the cave at the beach, but there was nothing to see so we hung out on the sand and swam”.
“I see” Miss Have said looking at me and back to Michael. Michael looked really guilty and I thought he was going to blurt out what had really happened, but he sat in silence.
Miss Have stood up and walked away without even looking back. Simon looked at Michael and said “That was close. I thought you were going to give us away” and Michael looked down and then looked at me and then looked away.
I think he was having a hard time keeping this to himself or just amongst us and was eager to share what we had discovered, but he also knew why we couldn’t tell anyone else about it.
The remainder of the day went by and the bell rang and it was time to go home. I met Simon and we found the others and all walked together out of the school grounds. I noticed Miss Have watching us and it was something I hadn’t noticed before. Maybe she had heard what we were talking about after all and was trying to get us to tell her what had really happened.
We reached the road where Michael and the girls walked the other way and said good bye and Simon and I walked together towards my house.
“You want to come to my house for a while?” I asked Simon. Simon nodded and we continued to walk until we reached my house and walked inside. Mum didn’t get home for about an hour after me, so we had the house to ourselves for a little while. We went straight upstairs to my room and placed our bags down in the doorway.
“Do you think Miss Have heard us today” I asked Simon? “She seemed very interested in where we were over the weekend and she has never asked us before”.
Simon nodded and said “That’s true, but why would she be interested” he asked?
“I don’t know to be honest, but she didn’t want to let it go at lunchtime and poor Michael looked really guilty” I said. “Yeah I was watching Michael too. I thought he was going to tell her everything”.
We got our books out and completed our homework without talking about the island or anything else and then I heard the front door and Mum yelled out “Redmond, I’m home”.
“That went fast” Simon said “We really got stuck into the home work then. We only have a little more to go and then we’re done”.
“I’ll go and say hi to Mum and I’ll be right back. I’ll get us a snack while I’m down there” I said and smiled and left the room to go downstairs and see Mum.
Mum was unpacking some groceries in the kitchen and looked at me and smiled once I walked into the kitchen.
“Hello Redmond, how way your day at school” she asked?
“Hi Mum. School was fine. Simon is up in my room and we are just finishing our home work. Are we able to have something to eat” I asked as I looked at her and went to the fridge to get some juice?
“Yes, you can have some of the chocolate cookies I baked yesterday. They are in the cupboard behind you”.
After pouring two glasses of juice, I went to the cupboard and grabbed a handful of cookies and heaped them onto a plate. Mum had got a tray out for me to take it upstairs altogether.
“Thank Mum. We will be finished soon and then I’ll come and help you with dinner” I said as I took the tray and went back up the stairs to my room.
Simon and I ate the cookies and drank the juice and finished our homework. Simon turned to me and said “I know we haven’t really spoken about it much today, but do you think we will visit the island often and teleport to different places” he asked?
“I’m sure we will return to the island and visit many places Simon and hopefully we won’t fall for the water in the fountain trick again” and we both laughed remembering that was where the adventure had really started.
We packed up our things and Simon grabbed his bag and announced it was time for him to go home for dinner. “I guess I will see you in the morning then and we can walk to school together” he said as we walked down the stairs towards the front door.
“Ok. I’ll see you in the morning and thanks again for helping with the homework” I said to him as he walked out the front door and down the drive.
I went to the kitchen where Mum was preparing dinner. “Ah Redmond. Just in time” she said “We are having stir fry tonight and it only takes a few minutes to cook it all in the wok. Could you set the table and I’ll have this ready in no time” she asked?
Mum had just finished chopping all the vegetables that she was using for the stir fry and after I had set the table I sat down at the table “How was your day Mum” I asked her?
“It was fine thankyou Redmond. The people there are lovely and it is a nice job. I am happy there and I’m really happy that you are happy Red. It has made me feel a lot better about moving here and to see you with friends and Simon. Well Simon is just lovely and I just want you to know that I’m really proud of you” she said as she looked at me and then turned back to her cooking.
Mum finished cooking the stir fry and we ate in silence. I was so tempted to tell her about the island, but I couldn’t break my promise to the others and remained silent.
Once we had finished eating I cleared the table and said “I’ll do the dishes tonight Mum” and without waiting for her answer I filled the sink with water and washed the dishes.
Mum had gone to the lounge and was sitting watching TV when I walked in and sat with her. It had seemed so long since I had done that with her, but she didn’t say a word as to her I had only been gone a day and everything was as it should be. We sat and watched the local news followed by the national news and then she got up and said “How about we watch a movie”?
We had a few DVD’s that Mum had brought home from work and as she went through them, she picked a family comedy. “I think this one” and asked me to put it in the DVD player.
We watched the movie and it was quite funny and we laughed and enjoyed the movie and then once it had finished we both decided it was late enough and probably a good idea to get into bed.
I went up to my room and brushed my teeth and hopped straight into bed. Lying there I began to think about the island and the magic of the crystals. I got my crystal out from the sock drawer and stared at it wondering what other power we were going to discover with them. I decided it was probably better not to think about that and try and get some sleep. After putting the crystal safely back in the sock drawer I hopped back into bed and went straight to sleep.
The next morning I woke and had a shower and went downstairs to join Mum for breakfast. It was the same as the day before. Cereals bowls set at the table and milk and juice all ready at the table. Mum was sitting eating her cereal and smiled and said “Good morning Redmond. I hope you slept well.”
“Good morning Mum. Yes I slept very well” and she nodded and continued eating her breakfast.
After breakfast I grabbed my lunch and my bag and said good bye to Mum and left for school.
Simon was almost at the driveway when I got there and said “I think your running a bit behind this morning Red” and we both laughed knowing that he was in fact a little early.
As we walked towards school Simon turned to me and said “I keep thinking about the island and everything that has happened. I still can’t believe we were gone for days, but everyone here thinks we were only gone for a day. That means we can go on heaps of adventures and no-one will know any different here”. I could tell Simon was excited and eager to use the crystals again and see what kind of adventure we could end up in next.