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Grade
7

The Unusual Proposal By: Maggie Kumberg

 

 “Get it out, get it out.”

 

   “I’m trying”

 

 Noah and Saige were at Marcus Verret's new gym, which Noah’s parents help fixed up because Marcus thought that St.Paul’s old, disrepaired, abandoned Children’s Asylum should be a community fitness center, and couldn’t find their key. Saige walked up to the door and noticed a certain something, the security box was broken. Saige called for Noah, Noah walked toward her with his phone. Saige grabbed his phone to call the cops, but it didn’t work. A muffled noise came from inside. Noah opened the door, Saige grabbed him just as the lockers near the door fell.

 

  Noah looked at Saige with his kind eyes and beautiful smile. Saige put her finger to her mouth and said, “Not now.”

 

 Saige stood up and motioned for him to come along. Noah lifted Saige over the lockers and followed.

 

 The gym was big; it had bathrooms, a sauna, showers, storage closet, office, basketball court, wrestling area, curves stations, and a loft. The loft had a set of wooden stairs leading up to it.

 

 Noah and Saige noticed blood on every other stair, almost as if they had been purposely placed there. Noah glanced at Saige and started to walk up the stairs. When they reached the top of the stairs they noticed a small, broken bottle covered in blood lying there.

 

 The loft was even darker than the downstairs because there were no windows. With lots of places to hide, anybody could be up there.

 

 “Help, help me.”

 

 Noah and Saige froze. The voice sounded like it was coming from downstairs. Noah and Saige carefully walked down the stairs to the basketball court. Noah opened the door for Saige. There was a small window so Saige could see. Suddenly Saige turned around as if she was leaving.

 

 “What’s wrong?”

 

 “That’s what’s wrong.”

 

 Noah turned to see a man lying on the floor. The man was covered  in blood. Noah slowly walked over to the man; he kneeled down and checked his pulse. The man tried to talk, but then just like that he was dead. Noah walked over to Saige who was crying, Noah  hugged Saige as she wiped her eyes. They were so tired from crying they accidentally fell asleep.

 

When  Saige started to wake up the next day, it was already late afternoon. She gulped realizing they were still at the gym. Noah heard her pacing and began awakening.  Saige began to cry again. Noah wiped her eyes and told her not to cry, and that everything was going to be okay.

 

 “Can we leave now.”

 

 “If you're ready.”

 

 Noah grabbed her hand and lifted her over the lockers. When they got outside they noticed Noah’s vehicle wasn’t there.  Noah sat down on the stairs in front of the door and Saige sat down on his lap. Noah asked Saige what she wanted to do, she told him she didn’t want to stay at the gym, but she knew they couldn’t make it into town before dark, and definitely not like this.

 

 Noah replied, “Yeah, not with the blood on my hands and your shirt, the authorities will think we killed him.”

 

 Saige looked down not knowing she had blood on her shirt.

 

 Saige looked at Noah, “Whatever happens I want to always be with you, promise?”

 

 “Promise,” Noah said with a big smile.

 

 “Wait, we never finished looking upstairs, maybe we can find something.”

 

 They both raced upstairs with no fear now. Once they were upstairs they stopped in their tracks, astonished. This was no ordinary loft; it was like a house. It had all the necessary items for living, a cabinet full of food, a fridge with drinks, another bathroom, a small couch, and a table with four chairs. Saige walked over to the small couch, there was a note halfway  tucked under the soft, brown blanket that was draped over it. Saige opened the note and read it . . .

 Dear Marcus Verret,

   “I am sorry that I have to do this, but it’s your fault. I know you might not find this before I come tomorrow, but I just want you to know that it has gone on far too long. You can’t force this upon them like you did me.”

 

                                                                                       - L.M.

 

 Noah realized he had heard the name Marcus Verret before.

 

 “Oh my gosh, Marcus Verret is the owner of this gym. I bet he’s the dead man downstairs.   We have to go find his ID.”

 

 Noah and Saige went downstairs to the basketball court. They opened the door so they could find the man’s ID, but when they went in they couldn’t find him.

 

“Well, it’s not like he just got up and walked away.”

 

 “Wait, was the dead man, possibly Marcus Verret, even in the court this morning,” said Saige with a scared face.

 

 “I don’t  know.  I was looking at you. Wait, I got an idea. We need to pack our gym bags full of evidence and then get out of here. You get food, water, and that brown blanket from upstairs, then we can meet back here to leave.”

 

 Saige grabbed her gym bag and got necessities from upstairs. Noah also grabbed his bag, but filled his with evidence like the note. When they were done they put on their bags and headed to the front door. Noah lifted Saige over the lockers again and they headed out. Once they were outside they were uncertain of what they were supposed to do. They both had realized they couldn’t get back into town before dark since the gym was so far out of town. They decided to head north toward town.

 

 Saige asked Noah, “Don’t you think it’s odd our parents haven’t come to find us.”

 

 “Well, yes, Saige I can’t lie to you. I know this is a weird place to do this, but I had a romantic night planned -- sleeping under the stars in a tent, and I had a picnic, but they were in the truck. I was also going to . . .”

 

 Saige cut him off, “describe the tent to me.”

 

 “Huh? Well, it’s a gray and navy tent and holds two people.”

 

 “I found your tent and maybe the L.M. man.”

 

 “Oh my gosh. You what?”

 

 “Look down the treeline about one tenth a mile.”

 

 Noah looked and saw the tent also his truck. They decided to keep their distance and circle him. They made a full circle around the tent and then met back up. Noah told Saige to open the tent and he would grab the man inside, if he was in there. Saige walked over to the tent and did as she was asked even though she was scared. Noah heard a snore come from the man, he also saw a gun. Noah grabbed the gun and told Saige to take the gun and drive as fast as she could to the police station. Saige listed and went to the vehicle. When she started the car the man woke up to see Noah’s fist in front of his face. Bang, crunch.  Noah had knocked the man out. Noah then wondered if the man was really L.M., or if he even killed anybody. Then he thought, “He still stole from me.” Once they arrived back at Marcus’ gym Noah decided to lock the man in the storage closet from the outside. A few minutes later Noah heard sirens and felt so relieved. The cops came in and and asked him to step outside. Noah went out to see Saige resting against the cop car. He went and stood by her, in silence. A moment later the officers came out carrying the man.  

 

 Two of the officers took the perpetrator and the other two took Noah and Saige. Once they got back to the police station they had Saige and Noah state what happened, yet they still didn’t have the victim. A few officers came out of the room the perpetrator was in. The men said the perpetrator was waking up and they would question him in a minute. Noah and Saige were also told they could stay to see how he pled or leave. They were curious so they stayed. A different officer came out of the room this time. The officer said the perpetrator was identified as Leonard Mackey, L.M. as his nickname. Then handed Saige a paper, she began reading.

 

 “I, Leonard Mackey, killed Marcus Verret, you will find his body buried under the tent I slept in. I knew when I went I shouldn’t do it, but he was an awful man. Marcus built that building for St.Paul’s Children Asylum, and forced children to be Catholic. If they didn’t do as they were told they were beaten. If you ever tried to leave you would be disposed of, as he put it. The only reason I know this is because my parents never wanted me, so Marcus took me. Ever since I was a toddler I was being forced. I couldn’t stand the thought of Marcus hurting other children like me. Anyways, this is how it all went down, I came a few nights ago, and checked into the Harberry Brook Inn. The next day I went to what I thought was the Children’s Asylum. I noticed there was a security box, and I couldn’t get in, so I punched it and walked in. I heard whistling in the basketball court. I went in the court and punched the  man. He fell to the ground, i’d remember that face anywhere, Marcus. I pulled out my gun and shot him so he’d have a slow, but painful death. I was talking a walk, then heard people. I snuck in planning to hurt them, but they were asleep. Instead, I put Marcus in the truck and pulled it into the woods. Once I buried Marcus I found the tent and picnic and decided to rest.”

 

 Saige looked up and the officer told her they were scheduling a trial, and they thought he would have a life sentence. The officers thanked them again, and asked if they needed a ride home.

 

 “No,” Noah quickly replied.

 

 They walked outside to leave.

 

 “Well, you never let me finish telling you what we were supposed to do at the gym.”

 

 “What could we have possibly done there?”

 

 “Well, I was going to do this.”

 

 Noah bent down on one knee, and pulled out a box from his pocket.

 

 “Saige Grace Thompson, will you make me the happiest man on the face of the earth and marry me?”

The Unusual Proposal By: Maggie Kumberg

 

 “Get it out, get it out.”

 

   “I’m trying”

 

 Noah and Saige were at Marcus Verret's new gym, which Noah’s parents help fixed up because Marcus thought that St.Paul’s old, disrepaired, abandoned Children’s Asylum should be a community fitness center, and couldn’t find their key. Saige walked up to the door and noticed a certain something, the security box was broken. Saige called for Noah, Noah walked toward her with his phone. Saige grabbed his phone to call the cops, but it didn’t work. A muffled noise came from inside. Noah opened the door, Saige grabbed him just as the lockers near the door fell.

 

  Noah looked at Saige with his kind eyes and beautiful smile. Saige put her finger to her mouth and said, “Not now.”

 

 Saige stood up and motioned for him to come along. Noah lifted Saige over the lockers and followed.

 

 The gym was big; it had bathrooms, a sauna, showers, storage closet, office, basketball court, wrestling area, curves stations, and a loft. The loft had a set of wooden stairs leading up to it.

 

 Noah and Saige noticed blood on every other stair, almost as if they had been purposely placed there. Noah glanced at Saige and started to walk up the stairs. When they reached the top of the stairs they noticed a small, broken bottle covered in blood lying there.

 

 The loft was even darker than the downstairs because there were no windows. With lots of places to hide, anybody could be up there.

 

 “Help, help me.”

 

 Noah and Saige froze. The voice sounded like it was coming from downstairs. Noah and Saige carefully walked down the stairs to the basketball court. Noah opened the door for Saige. There was a small window so Saige could see. Suddenly Saige turned around as if she was leaving.

 

 “What’s wrong?”

 

 “That’s what’s wrong.”

 

 Noah turned to see a man lying on the floor. The man was covered  in blood. Noah slowly walked over to the man; he kneeled down and checked his pulse. The man tried to talk, but then just like that he was dead. Noah walked over to Saige who was crying, Noah  hugged Saige as she wiped her eyes. They were so tired from crying they accidentally fell asleep.

 

When  Saige started to wake up the next day, it was already late afternoon. She gulped realizing they were still at the gym. Noah heard her pacing and began awakening.  Saige began to cry again. Noah wiped her eyes and told her not to cry, and that everything was going to be okay.

 

 “Can we leave now.”

 

 “If you're ready.”

 

 Noah grabbed her hand and lifted her over the lockers. When they got outside they noticed Noah’s vehicle wasn’t there.  Noah sat down on the stairs in front of the door and Saige sat down on his lap. Noah asked Saige what she wanted to do, she told him she didn’t want to stay at the gym, but she knew they couldn’t make it into town before dark, and definitely not like this.

 

 Noah replied, “Yeah, not with the blood on my hands and your shirt, the authorities will think we killed him.”

 

 Saige looked down not knowing she had blood on her shirt.

 

 Saige looked at Noah, “Whatever happens I want to always be with you, promise?”

 

 “Promise,” Noah said with a big smile.

 

 “Wait, we never finished looking upstairs, maybe we can find something.”

 

 They both raced upstairs with no fear now. Once they were upstairs they stopped in their tracks, astonished. This was no ordinary loft; it was like a house. It had all the necessary items for living, a cabinet full of food, a fridge with drinks, another bathroom, a small couch, and a table with four chairs. Saige walked over to the small couch, there was a note halfway  tucked under the soft, brown blanket that was draped over it. Saige opened the note and read it . . .

 Dear Marcus Verret,

   “I am sorry that I have to do this, but it’s your fault. I know you might not find this before I come tomorrow, but I just want you to know that it has gone on far too long. You can’t force this upon them like you did me.”

 

                                                                                       - L.M.

 

 Noah realized he had heard the name Marcus Verret before.

 

 “Oh my gosh, Marcus Verret is the owner of this gym. I bet he’s the dead man downstairs.   We have to go find his ID.”

 

 Noah and Saige went downstairs to the basketball court. They opened the door so they could find the man’s ID, but when they went in they couldn’t find him.

 

“Well, it’s not like he just got up and walked away.”

 

 “Wait, was the dead man, possibly Marcus Verret, even in the court this morning,” said Saige with a scared face.

 

 “I don’t  know.  I was looking at you. Wait, I got an idea. We need to pack our gym bags full of evidence and then get out of here. You get food, water, and that brown blanket from upstairs, then we can meet back here to leave.”

 

 Saige grabbed her gym bag and got necessities from upstairs. Noah also grabbed his bag, but filled his with evidence like the note. When they were done they put on their bags and headed to the front door. Noah lifted Saige over the lockers again and they headed out. Once they were outside they were uncertain of what they were supposed to do. They both had realized they couldn’t get back into town before dark since the gym was so far out of town. They decided to head north toward town.

 

 Saige asked Noah, “Don’t you think it’s odd our parents haven’t come to find us.”

 

 “Well, yes, Saige I can’t lie to you. I know this is a weird place to do this, but I had a romantic night planned -- sleeping under the stars in a tent, and I had a picnic, but they were in the truck. I was also going to . . .”

 

 Saige cut him off, “describe the tent to me.”

 

 “Huh? Well, it’s a gray and navy tent and holds two people.”

 

 “I found your tent and maybe the L.M. man.”

 

 “Oh my gosh. You what?”

 

 “Look down the treeline about one tenth a mile.”

 

 Noah looked and saw the tent also his truck. They decided to keep their distance and circle him. They made a full circle around the tent and then met back up. Noah told Saige to open the tent and he would grab the man inside, if he was in there. Saige walked over to the tent and did as she was asked even though she was scared. Noah heard a snore come from the man, he also saw a gun. Noah grabbed the gun and told Saige to take the gun and drive as fast as she could to the police station. Saige listed and went to the vehicle. When she started the car the man woke up to see Noah’s fist in front of his face. Bang, crunch.  Noah had knocked the man out. Noah then wondered if the man was really L.M., or if he even killed anybody. Then he thought, “He still stole from me.” Once they arrived back at Marcus’ gym Noah decided to lock the man in the storage closet from the outside. A few minutes later Noah heard sirens and felt so relieved. The cops came in and and asked him to step outside. Noah went out to see Saige resting against the cop car. He went and stood by her, in silence. A moment later the officers came out carrying the man.  

 

 Two of the officers took the perpetrator and the other two took Noah and Saige. Once they got back to the police station they had Saige and Noah state what happened, yet they still didn’t have the victim. A few officers came out of the room the perpetrator was in. The men said the perpetrator was waking up and they would question him in a minute. Noah and Saige were also told they could stay to see how he pled or leave. They were curious so they stayed. A different officer came out of the room this time. The officer said the perpetrator was identified as Leonard Mackey, L.M. as his nickname. Then handed Saige a paper, she began reading.

 

 “I, Leonard Mackey, killed Marcus Verret, you will find his body buried under the tent I slept in. I knew when I went I shouldn’t do it, but he was an awful man. Marcus built that building for St.Paul’s Children Asylum, and forced children to be Catholic. If they didn’t do as they were told they were beaten. If you ever tried to leave you would be disposed of, as he put it. The only reason I know this is because my parents never wanted me, so Marcus took me. Ever since I was a toddler I was being forced. I couldn’t stand the thought of Marcus hurting other children like me. Anyways, this is how it all went down, I came a few nights ago, and checked into the Harberry Brook Inn. The next day I went to what I thought was the Children’s Asylum. I noticed there was a security box, and I couldn’t get in, so I punched it and walked in. I heard whistling in the basketball court. I went in the court and punched the  man. He fell to the ground, i’d remember that face anywhere, Marcus. I pulled out my gun and shot him so he’d have a slow, but painful death. I was talking a walk, then heard people. I snuck in planning to hurt them, but they were asleep. Instead, I put Marcus in the truck and pulled it into the woods. Once I buried Marcus I found the tent and picnic and decided to rest.”

 

 Saige looked up and the officer told her they were scheduling a trial, and they thought he would have a life sentence. The officers thanked them again, and asked if they needed a ride home.

 

 “No,” Noah quickly replied.

 

 They walked outside to leave.

 

 “Well, you never let me finish telling you what we were supposed to do at the gym.”

 

 “What could we have possibly done there?”

 

 “Well, I was going to do this.”

 

 Noah bent down on one knee, and pulled out a box from his pocket.

 

 “Saige Grace Thompson, will you make me the happiest man on the face of the earth and marry me?”

 

State
MO
Zip Code
65084