The administrator of the writing club, Magic Pens, that I am in, created a story prompt to motivate us to write. Basically, we were at a meeting and read some of our stories on stage in front of everybody. Afterwards, our stories came alive and started attacking us. He wrote about where each person was afterwards and what state they were in, and I have matched them up in my story pretty well. We each had our own versions of what happened, and here is mine…

I nervously began to walk up the few stairs of the stage clenching my story within my hands. Walking to the small podium that was erected before the audience of Magic Penians, I felt a timid shake overcome me for a second. I had never actually read my story before an actual audience before, yet I was ready for the new challenge. I gave a faint, weak smile before reading the first few words of my rewrite. “Running through the early morning moistness of the Mathurin Forest that enveloped her quaint home in obscuration, a young girl of ten brushed through the rough branches that tore at her soft-featured face.” After a few minutes of reading my Horse from the Woods story, I began to feel more confident as I began to twitch less often and become more steady and fluent with my words. Before I knew it, I was leaving the stage with applause from the crowd and taking my seat in the first row.

After the remaining Magic Penians read their stories aloud, Mr. Gifford stood before the podium and thanked all the members for coming and sharing their works. He encouraged us to continue with our writings and to post often just before we began to flow out of the school auditorium and into the open commons. I met up with Hannah by the door as I began to describe how nervous I was while reading my story and held the auditorium door as members walked through.

Suddenly, there was a boisterous roar that bellowed through the empty hallways of our school and caused us to quickly cover our ears. A shrill bird-like scream followed the roar leading to the screams of many Magic Penians. The color swiftly departed from my face as I shook with fear.

“What was that?!” I heard somebody yell out, allowing me to recognize the voice of Rebecca.

“Everybody, stay calm!” yelled out Mr. Gifford from the stage. There was a look of bewilderment on his face as he glanced around. We could all feel a steady wave of trembles coming from beneath our feet. What was this? Just then the back wall of the auditorium exploded upon the stage floor with a tumultuous crash that rang against the curved auditorium ceilings. Mr. Gifford was blown to the side of the stage, slamming his side upon the podium as debris and plaster flew through the air. Smoke and dust erupted from the commotion creating a veil that obscured him from our view as a new formation was created within the wall.

I screamed aloud as I turned with my peers to stare into the oppressive darkness that had opened from the new portal. Emerging from the crumbled remains of the back stage wall was a monstrous dragon with scales gleaming the color of thick smoke. Standing out from the dark scales of the dragon’s stomach, lay a massive scar that seemed to have scabbed over throughout the years. His hide was made of protective scales that complimented the many large, black horns that protruded from the back of his head and a web-like crest ran from the top of his forehead back along his neck. Through the webbings of this crest and the thin membrane of his immense wings, ran the thick veins that carried the monster’s blood throughout his body. Beneath the row of horns that lined his eyebrow, we were able to see the quaint, glaring eyes that leered at us with an evil smirk that curled up the side of his face. A thin trail of smoke escaped the large nostrils at the end of the beast’s wide snout as he readied his next attack.

I recognized this mythical creature as my own. It was Antracius, one of the greatest dragons of all of Septia, not only in size, but also strength and power. This beast was from my imagination, placed in words onto the papers of my story. How was this possible? Thoughts flashed by my mind with little time to stay as panic quickly overcame them.

As the over-sized lizard reared on his powerful hind legs and lifted his head to scrape his sharpened horns against the school’s ceiling, I followed the screaming crowd out of the auditorium, flooding into the commons. The walls trembled from the dragon’s ferocious roar just before it launched from the stage and burst through the auditorium’s ceiling and into the second floor.

Just then a cat dashed down the hall with a remarkable collar upon its neck. Still astonished from the realization that my story had somehow taken on a life of its own, I managed to recognize the small pebble that swung from the animal’s neck. I glanced to Melissa as she too watched in amazement from her story before her. Her eyes widened as they, along with my own, followed the feline as it pounced past the crowd of students towards Snack Central.

“Melissa, isn’t that…” I managed to cry out just before a swarm of ugly, gray creatures emerged from the halls around Snack Central flashing their rows of razor-like teeth within their evil grins. Not Randy’s Deluge creatures?! Now it was Randy’s turn to gaze in awe at his imagination in flesh as a few of the creatures snatched up Koneko.

“No!” cried out Melissa as she began to run towards her fictional character, one arm outstretched. Just then, a bright flash engulfed the commons as the pebble around the cat’s collar illuminated a light that forced me to cover my eyes with my hand.

“What is happening?!” I questioned Hannah beside me who was shielding her face beneath her arm. The violet luminescence grew in intensity followed by a low hum that seemed to echo throughout my mind. Was anybody else hearing this? Soon, the gleam died down as I noticed the members around me return their arms to their side, blinking repeatedly.

“What was that?”

“Where did that light come from?”

“What is happening?”

“I need to get home!”

“We shouldn’t be here!”

“What happened to the dragon?”

Voices rang out across the empty room as the Magic Pens members grew confused and terrified, panicking amongst themselves. I caught a few running for the school’s front doors, screaming from fright.

Suddenly, three of the gray creatures’ weapons dropped to the ground with a clamorous, metallic clang as three new cats had appeared beside Koneko, each with a dusty-colored coat. Free from her captors’ arms, the collared cat soon darted from the hallways with a screeching meow. Melissa was struck with fear as the new cats began to prowl towards her. Their gleaming smirks revealed their razor-like teeth just before they pounced upon her and slammed her against the lockers. I turned my head from the sight as I heard members cry out for her around me. There were sounds of scraping metal as locker doors were thrown past me and Melissa’s scream echoed through the commons.

How could this be happening? Was she all right? Was I going to be all right? Where was Mr. Gifford? How was this possible? What was going to happen? What were we going to do?! My thoughts raced as my heart pounded within my chest. My stomach ached as a nervous feeling settled deep in the pit of my stomach. My throat went dry and I began to tremble with the thoughts of Melissa. Her cries had been silenced.

Just then, the gray creatures began to scramble towards us with their weapons withdrawn. Another deafening roar burst through the halls behind us as Antracius burst through the windows of the third floor, tearing through the walls of the school and destroying the stability of the building. The dragon spotted the Deluge creatures and flew directly over our huddled group and began to rip at them, tearing at their necks. Blood was spewed across the commons floors and lockers as the horrid creatures cried out their last screams of life.

I turned to see Matt arm himself with one of the creatures’ weapons followed by Rebecca and Jeremy, their eyes filled with determination. After my antagonist had finished devouring the herd of gray monsters, he flashed his eyes towards the remaining Magic Pens members and reared back on his hind legs. Bodies of Randy’s creations were spread across the floor, mangled and ripped to shreds, making me sick to my stomach. My dragon spread his intimidating wings behind him as he took in a deep breath, mixing with the chemicals within his lungs. I noticed the trail of smoke rising from his nostrils, and knew what was to come.

“Get out of the way!” I heard a distinct yell pierce through the frightened screams around me and found a hideous knight with his sword withdrawn over his shoulder, sprinting down the commons. “Move, move it! Come on! Let’s go, people!” he cried. I noted his modern speech and recognized him to be the knight from Bret’s tale, just before he swung his weapon into the dragon’s scar, delaying the dragon’s fiery attack. I stood beside Hannah, frozen with fear as Matt, Jeremy, and Rebecca joined Bret’s character, striking my dragon and fighting against him.

Unfortunately, they could not hold up against Antracius’s fearsome power. With a quick swipe, the powerful beast tore his spiked tail through them, slamming them against Snack Central. There were screams all around me, as I too opened my mouth, although no sound came from the dryness. Just then, I watched as Antracius fell from fatigue and weakness as blood poured from his open wound. The enormous scar that had rested in the center of his chest had been reopened and was now letting the crimson of his blood spill across the tile.

Suddenly, the windows from the school’s sidewall were shattered, thrusting blades of broken glass falling three stories until obliterating upon the ground floor. Two more dragons, much smaller than Antracius, flew into our school bearing riders. Atop the autumn-colored dragon, I heard a female’s voice cry out, “Over there! They need our help!”

“Straight ahead! Let’s go, Duke!” I heard from the midnight dragon’s rider.

As the two beasts flew over our remaining group, I recognized the dragons from Jeremy’s Our World story. They must be here to help! Antracius rose to his feet upon the new challenge and took in an oxygen-rich breath. As the chemicals from his lungs mixed with the carbon-dioxide that emitted from his breath, a blast of fire was launched upon the beast I knew as Shakira. I watched in both amazement and fear as the three dragons fought, launching streams of fire at one another and striking with their claws and horns.

A shrill, reptilian scream was forced from Shakira’s throat as my dragon plunged his teeth through her neck, and clawed at her golden wings. I felt my sense of hope diminish as she fell to the ground, blood abandoning her new wounds.

All of a sudden, I heard a horse’s neigh come from the upper commons. Could it be Duchess? I stared at the corner, overlooking as Duke slashed at Antracius’s crest, and waited to see what was to come. Just then, as I had hoped, my paint came leaping from the upper commons’ stairway. She turned around the pillar, ducking beneath the dragon’s wing as she carried Nadia upon her back. I marveled at the brown and white horse as she trotted skillfully around the tight space, giving me a slight glance at the scar embedded within her forehead and was amazed to see my human character clench her eyes and fists.

“Run!” I screamed as I turned and began running the opposite direction. I knew what was to come. The Magic Penians trusted me, turning with me and running from the ferocious dragon battle just before a thundering boom erupted from behind us. I didn’t need to turn my head to know that Nadia had created a forceful blast of energy that struck anything near her, including Antracius. An after-wave from the blast of energy exerted enough force to send me to the ground, crushing my side as I impacted with the hard surface.

I moaned in pain as I glanced around me. I found Bret upon a table a few feet from me, and Jared sprawled beneath a row of lockers. Randy, Tim, and Desirae had been thrust towards the main office, whereas Isaac had been slammed against the poles of the auditorium. I managed to lift myself up from the ground with a sharp pain in my side as I helped Jared and Bret to their feet. I then realized that I couldn’t find my friend. “Hannah!” I called out for her. “Where are you?”

A heavy feeling that I had lost another friend came over me just before I heard an answer. “I’m up here!”

“Where?” I replied as I shot my eyes to the ceiling.

“Over there!” exclaimed Jared, pointing to where the collection of American flags had once rested. Just above the ledge, a large hole had been blown into the wall, sheltering my friend, safely above the second floor.

“How did you get up th-“ Suddenly, I was cut off as another beast came flying into the room. There was an eerie eagle-like screech that pierced my ears as I witnessed my gryphon soaring through the destroyed walls. The creature’s broad, feathered wings carried it over our heads as it screeched through its pointed beak. It stretched out its golden paws as it unleashed its claws from their furry cover and began to circle overhead Bret, Jared, and I. Why did I have to write about such treacherous creatures?!

“Grab my hand!” I heard from behind as I found Nadia clenching my wrist and dragging me behind her upon her mount. I was actually riding my fictional character! I couldn’t help but feel a slight thrill as I adjusted myself on Duchess’s back before feeling a sharp pain rip through my body. I screamed as I was carried from the horse and brought high above the first floor. The pain increased as I felt the sharp claws of the gryphon pierce deeper into my back, ripping through my flesh and dropping specks of blood down below.

I screamed and wildly kicked my feet about as I frantically tried to escape from the gryphon’s death-grip. Was this to be the end of me? Was this the way I was to leave the world? Was I going to die? Thoughts raced through my head at the same pace as my heart. I trembled with fear as my breaths came uneven and choked.

Suddenly, I was released from the gryphon’s clutches as I felt the claws emerge from my back. I fell from the air as I smashed into the tables below. Excruciating pain exploded through my body as my blood covered the wood from which I lay on. The world seemed to fade from my view as I heard the muffled yells from my friends. My eyes began to close unwillingly just as Terri ran past me. I tried to raise up my arm. I tried to call out. I tried to do anything, only to find that I could not.

From above, I watched as the gryphon circled overhead with its back claws extended before it. The fearsome creature began to lower as it drew closer to me, screaming its bird-like call. As it landed beside me, spraying my body with brown and gray feathers, it slashed at the table below me, dropping me to the ground beneath the pile of tables. For once, I was able to see my drawing come to life as the gryphon began to lick the dripping blood from its paws and beak. It was my blood and my life that the beast stole from me. My vision grew dark and the world fell silent just as I felt the sharp beak tear into my flesh, ripping from my bones. So long to getting published.

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