“But grandma, I don’t understand why!”, protested Kayla Jones, a girl at the age of 14.
“Why what, my dear Kayla?”, her kind and understanding grandmother asked.
“Yeah, Kayla, why what?”, questioned her older sister who was 17, named Kaitlyn.
“Why it always has to be the knight in shining armor that saves the damsel in distress, not the other way around?”, Kayla clarified.
“I do not know,” admitted her grandmother with a sigh. “Although I always wondered that too.”
“The storyteller people just made it like that, I guess. Maybe they thought boys were somehow stronger than girls. Which is not true,” said Kaitlyn.
“Yeah, of course not. I mean, Bella won the 100-yard dash at school, not Alex,” Kayla added.
“Maybe not physically stronger, but stronger inside,” said their grandmother.
“Well, we aren’t weak inside either. Simon cried when their grandfather died, and Lilly seemed sadder though, but she never cried again, not even when she got the news,” Kayla added about the twins whose grandfather passed away recently.
Their grandmother sighed again. “It is late, and you two should be getting some sleep.”
She tucked them into bed, said goodnight, and turned off the light.
Kayla sighed and stared up at the ceiling, covered with glow in the dark stars. She brushed away a strand of strawberry blond hair out of her face. She could hear her sister’s even, slow breathing, which indicated that she was asleep already. Kayla thought about her mother, Evelyn. Her beautiful straight hair, the same shade as her own. And her bright blue eyes, also the same shade as her own, although her mother always thought Kayla’s were brighter. She had inherited not only the same looks from her mother, but the curiosity and brains. She always was wondering about something, and almost always used her brain to find the answer. They also shared a love of books.
Kaitlyn was more like her father, Robert. Light brown hair and emerald green eyes. Both were charming and also smart, but not with as much curiosity as Evelyn and Kayla. Robert was the most popular boy at school for quite some time because of his looks, and Kaitlyn was the most popular girl in from grade nine to right now. But being only popular won’t get you anywhere. I like me and my mom’s curiosity better than Kaitlyn and dad’s charm better anyway. Also, they like movies better than books, which I just don’t understand.
Kayla knew that one day she would prove those storytellers wrong. One day, the damsel would be the one saving the knight. And she would be that damsel.
The next morning started off normally. The sisters dragged themselves out of bed and headed off to school, walking as they only lived one block away. They separated ways, Kayla going to elementary school and Kaitlyn to middle school. Kayla and her two best friends, Lilly Anderson and Bella Endro, met under their favorite shady spot under a huge tree. The “Shady Tree”, as the three girls called it, had been their meeting spot for many years since they met in kindergarten. Kayla shared with them the talk that she had with her grandmother and sister the previous night, and both Lilly and Bella agreed with her. Of course they thought girls were stronger than boys, if not equal.
During lunch, Kayla wandered off by herself to the library, an often visited place for her. She browsed the fantasy section and discovered a book that she had never seen before, even in the dozens of times she visited. It might have been a new book, except for the face that it looked about a century old. Its leather cover was peeling off, and the pages were yellowed and smelled musty. She flipped through it, being careful not to rip any of the pages.
Suddenly, Kayla flipped to a page of a beautiful fairytale village, capturing the perfect image of townsfolk bustling about, and in the distance, on top of a green mountain against a blue sky, was the most amazing fantasy castle that Kayla had ever seen in her entire life. I must borrow this book and show the pictures to Kaitlyn, she thought. Hugging it to her chest, she set it down at the librarian’s desk.
“I would like to check this book out,” she said, and gave her her name.
The librarian looked confused. “This book is not in our catalogue, but since you found it in the library, you may take it home. Please don’t destroy it in any way, as it looks very old.”
Kayla thanked the librarian, and left.
At home, Kayla sat at her desk and flipped open the book and found the picture. She breathed in the musty aroma, which strangely, to her, smelled good.
“Ew, what smells?”, said Kaitlyn, fanning the air around her and pinching her nose.
“Sorry, it’s a book. Ever heard of one? And I actually like this smell. Look at this,” she said to Kaitlyn, and showed her the picture.
“Uh…Kayla…the page…it’s blank…”, said Kaitlyn, looking very perplexed.
“What?”, Kayla gasped, even more confused.
The sisters looked down at the page, which sure enough, was blank.
“What?”, Kayla said again. “It had the most beautiful picture of the most beautiful fairytale village! Like literally five minutes ago!”
Suddenly, the sisters felt like there was something really weird happening, which is probably would everyone would feel with a book that had disappearing pictures. They looked around, realizing to their horror that they were in the middle of a swirling vortex of green and blue light!
“What the heck is happening?!”, cried the two sisters in unison.
A blast of bright white and yellow light filled the room. And Kayla and Kaitlyn disappeared with a flash.