The Carnival of Delight was in town again and no one was more excited than Richie Colbert. Richie loved everything about the carnival and couldn’t wait to go to it.
Richie was all play and no work type of sixth-grader. Everyone who knew him could all agree with that. His parents had to constantly remind him to finish his homework before he could play video games with his friends each night. He would spend the entire weekend with his friends at the local arcade and have to be reminded to leave when it was closing time.
All of Richie’s teachers could agree that Richie was a slacker in his classes and that he was a trouble maker. He would get detentions from being caught with his phone out playing games or from using the school computers for just games not approved by the school
It was a miracle that Richie was even in sixth grade. He never really paid attention in class and drove his teachers crazy but he would make it with just having a C in each class. Some of his classmates just thought he got the C just so his teachers wouldn’t have to teach him again. Each time he had detention, it would be a different teacher. The students were sure the teachers did a “Nose Go” to decide who had detention duties.
Richie was with his best friend Alex looking at the large sign sticking out of the ground by the giant vacant lot. “Be prepared to have loads of fun at Mr. Notate Fruun’s Carnival of Delight.” Alex was reading from the sign. Alex looked at Richie. “I take it you’re going to go to the carnival this weekend.” He said. Alex was sure of it. The carnival was something that Richie loved going to.
Richie looked at his friend. “You know me well enough Alex.” He replied. “Of course I’m going to go to the carnival.” He smiled and looked at the sign. “One day, I’m going to work for the carnival and travel with the Carnival of Delight everywhere.”
Alex shook his head. It was at times like this that he wondered how the two of them were friends. They were so different from each other. Richie loved only having fun and never took anything seriously. Alex though studied hard and did his schoolwork before having fun. “You know you can’t make a living working for the carnival, right?” Alex asked Richie.
Richie snorted. “That’s how Mr. Notate Fruun makes his living.” He reminded Alex, pointing at the painting of Mr. Notate Fruun. The painting captured the creepiness and yet mysteriousness of Notate Fruun, the owner of the carnival. Richie always enjoyed how Notate Fruun welcomed the guests to the Carnival of Delight.
Alex looked at his watch. “I need to get going man.” He said to Richie. “We have that paper due this Friday for Mrs. Smith.” Alex looked at his friend. He had a feeling that Richie hadn’t even started the paper yet.
Richie nodded even though it was clear he wasn’t paying attention to Alex. Richie was still thinking about working for the carnival. He knew that Notate Fruun would for sure make him his successor one day. The Carnival of Delight should be run by someone who knew how to have fun and Notate Fruun always made the carnival so much fun.
Alex sighed and walked off. He knew that it would be pointless trying to get Richie’s attention. Richie was completely absorbed by the carnival sign and thinking of working for the carnival. Alex enjoyed hanging out with Richie but at times, Richie could be a major pain in the butt.
Richie looked at the painting of Notate Fruun. “I wish I was you.” He said. “I could easily run the Carnival of Delight.” No sooner did he say that he felt a chill in the air. Richie, feeling like someone was watching him, looked around. There was no one there. Richie shook his head. He must have imagined the feeling. He took off running.
From where they were hiding, they watched Richie leaving the vacant lot. “Should we go get him? He did say the words.” One of them said.
“No.” A female voice said. “Remember what he said.” She wasn’t referring to Richie but to the one they worked for. “We can’t force him to join us. He has to go down the same path the rest of us did.”
“Do you think he realizes what will happen to him for making that wish?” Someone else asked.
“Did any of us know what would happen to us after we had made that wish?” The female voice asked her group. “He made the wish though so he’ll learn what the rest of us learned.”