The Unusual Footsteps
Angela, Age 12, Seoul, Korea

“Maia, don’t be worried, your first day of school will be fine, I promise!” said Mom.
It was the first day of Daisy School. Maia was in grade five, and she didn’t know what to do in a new school especially how to get along with friends. Her father suggested moving since it was closer to work.

Maia put on her clothes, and carried her backpack. Then she headed to school. When she was nearly there, she took a deep breath and smoothly let it out. Every footstep had shaken when she was walking to the new school. There were so many interesting students, some had long hair, and some that had short hair. There were Korean and Japanese students.

Maia stepped toward class 5-3 and knocked quietly on the door. A young, pretty woman opened the door and then held out her hands.

She said, “Nice to meet you, I see that you are the new student. My name is Ms. Rainson. Your name is?”

Maia felt a little bit nervous, but she said, “Maia Thurnall, Ms. Rainson…” ...”

Ms. Rainson clapped her hand and said, “Wonderful, now, I will introduce you to my class! “

Maia stepped into the classroom and then wrote her name on the board. The chalk seemed pretty old, as it was short and moldy.

“My name is Maia Thurnall,” she began, “I am going to be a new student in Daisy school 5-3. Do you have any questions?”

A boy raised his hand, “What do you like to do, I enjoy reading books. I have the new Captain Underpants series, ; do you want to borrow it, and it’s really funny!”

Maia said while wrinkling her eyebrows, “I do like books, but I will refuse. I like adventuring adventure and detective stories. Those are the things I mostly do, solve mysteries.”

A girl in the second row made a slight smile at me. The teacher made Maia sit beside Taylor on the front row.

It was recess and the girl called Taylor and Maia to her desk.

The girl said, “I’m Beth, Taylor and I enjoy adventures too, meet us after class!”

The next class was science and then modeling. The bell rang and the class was finished.

Taylor grabbed Maia’s arm and ran to the big oak tree.

Beth said, “We found the unicorn’s footprints this morning. Let’s all follow it together; I really want to see it!” Beth said.

Taylor said, “What if it’s not a unicorn and is just a plain old horse?” Taylor said.

Beth stared at Taylor, “Come on, I just have a little bit of time, I have art class, we have to hurry up!” Beth stared at Taylor.

Maia followed the footsteps and it led to the waterfall. The footsteps looked different than others. It looked, what should I say, magical, maybe? Beth and Taylor sat on the floor and then wrinkled her eyes. Maia just stood there staring at the waterfall. It was strange. How could a horse’s footprint lead to a … waterfall? It doesn’t mean that the horse died, thought Maia. Maia shouted with happiness and then she ran around the waterfall. She hugged Taylor and Beth.

Beth said, “What is it? What is it? Did you find the rest of the tracks or something?” Beth asked.

Maia nodded, “It leads behind the waterfall, and you didn’t read the magic book where every magical creature likes living behind the a waterfall?”

Taylor opened her mouth wide and so did Beth. The girls all ran to the waterfall.
As Taylor reached inside the waterfall, she said, “Gosh, the water really is strong and cold! Are you sure that we won’t bump into a rock?”

Beth tried first. She jumped into the water. There was no sign of her. Maia smiled at Taylor. She jumped in.

Beth and Maia said, “It works Taylor, come on, it’s your turn!”

Taylor jumped, but she just bumped into al rock. She tried several times more, but it never worked. Ah, this was the key; they had to believe in magic.

Beth said, “Taylor, believe in magic! Believing is the key for it, quickly! There’s so much to see here!” Beth said.

Taylor closed her eyes and thought, I believe in magic, I am a magic believer, magic is wonderful… She went through the rock and she fell right on the field. There were fairy dusts, elves, unicorns, and even dragons. It looked so peaceful there, as no one had frowning faces.

Maia smelled the dust, but she fell asleep, so did the other two girls.

When Maia woke up, she was lying on the big leaves. Maia looked around to see if there were any of her friends. Beth was across, and Taylor was on the other side.

“Taylor, Beth, wake up!” shouted Maia.

Beth and Taylor slowly opened their eyes and then looked at each other. Beth got off the leaf and then helped Maia and Taylor out.

“You awoke girls; I see that you are from the human’s land. I have was been there a little while ago.”

It was a unicorn. It looked fancier than the girls thought, and the horn was way bigger and longer. The unicorn’s blue eyes sparkled like a diamond and its fur shined like the sun. Its legs were so long and stiff, and the mane and the tails were so silky and colorful.

Beth screamed with happiness, “We found the unicorn, now we have to go back to the human world; I am late for my academy!”

The unicorn said, “Only creatures from this world can go to the human world, I am sorry but I think you cannot go back to the human world. You see, this is a magic world and only magical creatures and magical things can see the door to the human world and you guys are…-“

“Wait,” Taylor interrupted, ”“Does that mean that we have to live here for the our whole life? In this world where we fall asleep whenever we go outside? Whatever your name is, Beth, Maia, and I can’t accept it, you know what? I don’t believe in magic, my friends forced me to believe in magic! Doesn’t is that mean that I have to go, since I don’t have anything to do with you and your strange world? Isn’t it a problem that I am not included in, and I am going to find the door without anybody’s help! Even Maia and Beth who made me come to this world that I hate! Actually, it’s not Beth’s fault! Maia, it’s your fault since you found the door to here, what are you going to do now, just make me survive here with sleeping all day? I don’t even want to waste my time here being with you!”

Taylor ran away crying. It seemed like that she didn’t fall asleep, it was because it was all gone, the magic. Taylor was in the lake where the waterfall was. She just sat in the lake, all wet. She couldn’t see Maia or Beth. She touched the waterfall and nothing worked except touching the rocks.

Taylor got up and lay under the tree sobbing and as she noticed that magic was like friendship.

In the magic world, everybody knew what had happened. The unicorn lay down on the floor.

It said, “Guys, believe in magic, or you will be like your friend.”

Maia said, “It’s all because of me, you know that I am the one who brought you here, Beth, sorry,” Maia said.

The unicorn stood up and brought two shiny silver rings. She put the ring on both of them, and they were in the past when Maia was greeted by the teacher.

Maia ran out of the classroom and shouted, “Maia, it’s me Beth!”

“I’m Maia Thurnall, and you are Beth! Where’s Taylor? Where’s the unicorn? Wait, we have the ring!” Maia said.

“Maia? Do you know her, and what’s the unicorn?” asked Ms. Rainson.

Taylor came out of the classroom and said, “I don’t know this girl, how do you know me and Beth, what are you doing? Do you know her?”

Mia and Beth smiled at each other and then slightly touched the magic ring. It slowly disappeared.

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