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Angela slung her backpack over her shoulders, brushing her waist long, sleek jet black hair aside, and started towards the front door in the quiet house. Her cat brushed against her leg, not wanting Angela to go. “Aw, Alisha,” Angela said, consoling her cat, reaching down to pet her, “I won’t be gone long. I’m just going to school.” Alisha meowed, as if telling Angela not to go. Angela’s parents were away on a business trip to Scotland, and they were going to be away for two weeks. Angela opened the front door and walked out, ignoring a meow of protest from Alisha. She took her bike out from the garage and started to bike along the sidewalk to school. A few minutes later, a horse was galloping next to her on the dirt road. “That’s strange,” Angela thought. Most people rode on bikes or cars, but not many horse riders. The person on the horse was dressed in black, like a ninja. There was a coil of thick rope stuffed into their pocket, barely visible. The rider was staying pretty level with Angela, which was creepy. Angela slowed down, seeing what the rider on the horse would do. Seconds later, the rider slowed down his horse, too. This worried Angela. Was this person stalking her? Or was he planning something sinister? Angela wasn’t sure, but she knew she had to try to lose him. She sped up, zooming towards her school. Unfortunately, it was to no avail, the rider made his horse gallop faster, pacing Angela on the road! Then, in one swift movement, he swept Angela off of her bike, and onto the horse’s back behind him! Angela saw her bike topple over sideways onto the sidewalk. She tried to scream, but the kidnapper had already stuffed cotton into her mouth. Then, with one hand, he tied her hands in front of her with the coil of rope she had seen earlier. Angela knew she had been kidnapped. “I’ll get away, just at the right time,” she thought, trying to reassure herself. It didn’t work, but at least she could try to get away. Soon, they were off of the road, on a field of grass. Angela saw a rabbit scurry past, the only other life she had seen during the ride. A while later, they came across a small, old, crumbly building, seemingly abandoned. Her kidnapper hopped off the horse, and tied the horse to a wooden post. Then he threw Angela off of the horse and began dragging her towards the building. Angela kicked and struggled, but the kidnapper held her tight. Once they were in the building, the kidnapper took Angela into a room, chaining one of her legs to the bricks on the mildew covered wall. Then, cackling, the kidnapper left and locked the room’s door with a loud clang! Angela looked around, trying to see if anything could help her get out, or at least unchain her from the wall. There was nothing in the room, except for unidentifiable, long and unruly tangled plants growing between deep cracks in the floor. There was only one window, and bright, morning sunlight seeped in between the iron bars of the window. The room smelled like the inside pocket of a musty, old woman. Angela studied the chain to check if it was old or cracked, and possibly breakable. Unfortunately, the iron links of the chain looked brand new, if it weren’t for the layer of rust covering it. Suddenly, she thought of Alisha. She instantly thought she should have just listened to her cat and stayed home. What would happen if she couldn’t escape? Angela didn’t want to think of that possibility. Instead, she focused on the task at hand. Suddenly, she remembered that she had scissors in her backpack for schoolwork. “At least my hands aren’t tied behind my back,” Angela said to herself gratefully. Suddenly, she realized there was a problem. Because her hands were tied, she couldn’t slip her backpack off. “Great!” she thought sarcastically, “Now how will I get my scissors out?” She sat down on the hard, stone ground and thought for a moment. Then, she got an idea. Working carefully, she slid her head under one of the straps of her backpack, until it was on her other shoulder, next to the other strap of the backpack. Then, now that it was easier to move her head towards her backpack, since now she didn’t have to turn all the way around, she reached for the slider, which is the part that moves on the zipper, and bit it. Then she began to pull it, opening up the backpack. There lay papers, her lunchbox, and the scissors. Carefully, she picked the scissors up by the handle with her mouth and rubbed it against a stone to sharpen it, and began sawing and cutting at the rope on her hands. Minutes later, her hands were free. She then desperately and hopelessly tried to cut the chain on her leg, but the scissors did nothing to the chain. Instead, her scissors were ruined. She put her mangled scissors away and zipped up her backpack. Suddenly, an ominous voice warned, “You must get the Book of All Knowing before the evil one snatches it and causes destruction.” Angela looked around frantically. She saw a tiny gargoyle in the corner that she had overlooked. Suddenly, the chain clicked loose and slid off of Angela’s leg. “Now go, before it is too late,” the statue said. Some bricks slid out of the wall, creating an opening.

      Angela ran out and into the sunlight. She climbed upon the horse she had ridden, with no kidnapper in sight, and galloped towards her town. Luckily, she had memorized the way she had come. Soon, she was back on the dirt roads she knew. Deep in thought, she couldn't help but wonder what the Book of All Knowing was, and if her parents even knew she had been kidnapped. Did the school notice her absence? She pushed the thoughts out of her mind. She galloped to Park Meadow's Library, and tied the horse down, and went inside. Once inside, she began searching for anything related to the so called Book of All Knowing. After she had obtained a small stack of books, she checked them out of the library and rode home. At her house, she tied the horse again and gave it an apple, a few carrots, and water. Then, she and Alisha ate dinner. Settling into a comfy chair with Alisha in her lap, she studied the books from the library well into the night.

Angela woke up at her desk, her head in a book, and sunlight was shining through the window. Alisha was dozing in her lap. After a few seconds, Angela realized she had fallen asleep while reading. From the readings, all she had learned was that the Book of All Knowing was sacred, and people with good and evil intentions alike desired it. One book said the book was said to be in the temple of Perlium, but Angela didn’t know where or what that was. Tired, with dark circles under her green eyes, she trudged down stairs to eat breakfast.

Angela went outside to feed the horse, and then she walked up the hill behind her house. She thought that the fresh, outside air might help her think. A cool breeze rustled her hair. She still hadn’t had any ideas about where to look for the Book of All Knowing! Frustrated, she kicked a large rock, sending it tumbling down the hill. Halfway down, she heard the rock hit something. She rushed down the hill, curious. She saw a glint in the dirt! Hurriedly, she grabbed a gardening spade from the tool shed, and furiously began digging where she had seen the bright glint. Minutes later, she had a metal tin box in her hands. After chipping away at bits of rust, she cracked it open with great effort. She tucked the spade into a loop in her belt, thinking she might need it later. Inside the box, there was a wrinkly, old, yellowed, ancient-looking paper inside. Taking a deep breath, she read it. It said that the Book of All Knowing was in an ancient temple, called Perlium, which Angela recalled was in one of the books from the library. But this paper said that it was in a place called Ristaniya, which Angela figured had to be useful. As soon as her eyes swept over the last words on the page, it suddenly began glowing a silvery shade of gold. Angela felt a tug. Suddenly, she was tumbling head-first into the paper!

All was black. Angela felt herself falling, and fear enveloped her. “What is happening?” she wondered. She felt freezing cold, and then after a few seconds, she was burning hot. These two sensations kept alternating as Angela fell into the black emptiness.

Angela found herself laying on robin-blue grass with a butterfly resting on her nose, flexing its purple and green wings. Angela sat up, and the butterfly flew away. The sky, sprinkled with a few fluffy white clouds, was a brilliant, light blue. A fox darted by her, chasing after a bird. As Angela took in her surroundings. She caught sight of a building made of slabs of rock. Mustering up all of her courage, she walked through its dark opening.

      It was pitch black inside, Angela could barely see. After a minute, her eyes adjusted to the dark, she saw a long, snaking tunnel before her. She hesitated, but then curiosity got the better of her and she trekked into the tunnel. As she walked, she could hear the steady dripping of water, her own footsteps, and the rhythmic beating of her heart. Besides that, all was quiet. Angela wondered if this was the temple Perlium, in Ristaniya. Finally, she came to a room dimly lit by two torches. In the middle of the room, there was a podium of sorts, something fit only for a palace. Cautiously, Angela stepped over to it. On it, there was a paper that looked even older than the last one, the edges were torn and tattered. It read, “To go forward, you must face danger before you acquire what you seek.” Angela gulped. She considered turning around and running home. But, she realized with dread, she did not know how to get home. So she forced herself onward, into yet another tunnel.

      Unwillingly, she trudged forward, prepared for anything to jump out at her. She heard a splash. She jumped. She froze. Nothing was there. Her right foot felt wet. She looked down. She saw, realizing her own silliness that she had stepped into a big puddle. Breathing a sigh of relief, she continued. A few seconds later, she thought she heard scraping. She convinced herself that she was just hearing things because she was so tense and scared. But after a few minutes, she distinctly heard it again. She couldn’t see anything, though. Straining hard, she looked into the darkness. She saw small shadows scurrying across the floor. “Just rats and mice,” she thought, relieved. A sharp pain pierced her foot. Then suddenly, she felt more and more bites. “Ow!” She yelled. Thinking quickly, she whipped out her gardening spade and swiped at the rodents. Some scurried away, but there were still hundreds more. She batted them away as she walked on. Soon, there were bats pulling at her hair, too. A while later, bats that were breathing fire and ice were upon her. She furiously batted and swiped at as many bats and rodents as she could. The bats singed and froze her everywhere; on her head and clothes, and sometimes on her face. Finally, she was in another room with another fancy podium in the middle. The rodents and bats quickly scattered out of the room, as if afraid of what was in it. Angela, not hurt too badly, besides a few cuts and burns, walked to the podium. On it, she saw, was a book. The front was written in an ancient language that she couldn’t read. Somehow, she knew it was the Book of All Knowing. She picked it up, and was immediately enveloped in a golden light, and fell into the book.

Again, everything was black. Angela was falling, but she wasn’t afraid. She had gotten the book! She also felt freezing cold, and then after a few seconds, she was burning hot, like the last time. These two sensations kept alternating as Angela fell into the black emptiness.

      Angela woke up on her lawn, and got up. In her hands was the Book of All Knowing. She felt triumph surge through her, knowing she’d succeeded. She thought about what the statue had said in the dungeon, about an evil one taking the book. Well at least now the book was in good hands and no one would cause destruction, Angela thought happily.

“And what are you doing with my book?” A sinister voice asked from behind her. Angela quickly twirled around. A man with a black hat, which looked like a wizard’s hat, was glaring at her menacingly. “Give it to me, now!” he snarled.

“No, it’s not your book!” Angela argued, suddenly feeling possessive, “I’m not going to give it to you!”

“Silly girl,” he chuckled, “Either way, with or without the book, this world will crumble to dust before your very eyes!”

“I won’t let that happen!” Angela said. She ran back into the tool shed and returned with a long sword that was kept there, in case of emergencies.

“Ah, so is that what you want to do?” the man asked, “Then we shall fight!” He unsheathed his own sword, which gleamed in the afternoon sun. The two began battling, moving around the lawn, swords clashing. Angela almost cut the man’s hand, but he quickly moved his sword in the way, blocking her. He almost stabbed Angela’s stomach, but she rolled out of the way. Finally, the man stopped, defeated. “I will come back for it!” he warned before disappearing in a puff of smoke.

Angela went into her house with the book, and was surprised when she saw what was inside.

Alisha was in her mom’s lap, who was sitting next to her dad on the couch. Apparently, they, too, were in search of the Book of All Knowing before the evil man found it, and when they found out Angela had gotten it, they came back home. They were very proud of her, so they celebrated with cake. They said they would explain everything in the morning. When Angela went to sleep, she put the Book of All Knowing on her desk, but when she woke up, it was gone, and in its place was a black wizard’s hat...


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