Year of the Dragon

By , Los Altos, CA

Who am I? I am an orphan named Sky. Let me retell the story of what happened. It started when I was walking home from soccer practice. The night outlined something shining on the ground. I bent down and picked it up. My arrowhead necklace swinging. My necklace was my most valued possession. It was found around my neck when I appeared at the orphanage.The scale was hard and it shined brightly in the sun and it shone bright red. Little did I know that I had picked something up more important than a simple scale. I unslung my backpack and dropped it in the small front pocket. When, I got home and dropped my soccer bag in the garage. When I came out, my adoptive mom had come from upstairs

“Hi mom,” I said.
“How was soccer?” she asked.
“It was good,” I said which was answer to everything without going into detail. I went to my room and finished my math homework. When I finished, I pulled out the scale and looked closer. I felt a pull. I felt I was part of the scale and it was part of me but I had never seen it in my life. I held it under the light and found engravings on the interior of the scale. I brought a piece of paper and careful drew it down. It was a map but to what? I did not know. I knew this was important. People don’t just find scales on the ground with a map on it .I took the paper and stowed it away in a drawer. Later, I went to bed.
I woke up to the sound of the alarm. Groaning, I rolled out of bed. I got ready for school and walked to school. I walked over to my best friend, Alex. Between us, I called him Snow because he had stark white hair. We used to joke that his hair was actual snow. He was a great friend. He always listened to my dreams and wondering about my true parents.
“Snow, I have something to tell you,” I said taking out the scale. “I found this yesterday.”
I passed it to him and he flipped it around in his hand. I also showed him the map.
“This is weird,” He said, reaching into his backpack.
“Why?” I asked, curious.
“Because I found this on the way home from school,” he said as he pulled out a tiger claw. I looked at it closely and saw that there were engravings on it. I was feeling that it was important somehow. It was all confusing and troubling. He tugged on his shirt, uncertain. When I got home, I found out that the map showed the Los Altos. I talked with my mom and Snow’s family and we agreed we would all go to Los Altos Hills together on the first day of summer that was two days away. I went to school the next day with no trouble. Snow and I would talk to each other thinking and trying to find out what it meant. After school, my mom picked me up. The next day, My family met their family at the base of a hill. Snow and I both had older sisters. Although mine was not not my actual sister. As we walked, our parents went in the front talking and catching up. Our sisters followed and we hung to the back of the group. We were talking about what the items could possibly mean, when a stranger walked out from around a nearby hill. He made no effort to hide the fact that he was walking toward us. He looked at me and said that he was my guide. He towered over us. He was wearing a t-shirt and a pair of shorts with a pair of blue eyes. His hair was light brown but it did not hide his stern face.
“I am sorry to say that your guide didn’t make it,” He said to Snow as his face lost all harshness.
“Who are you?” I demanded
“Who didn’t make it?” Snow asked looking to his parents as I looked to My parents who had adopted me. They were the ones I loved so much.
“You did get the note, right?” The man said looking to our parents.
My Dad finally found his voice, “We never told them.”
“You will come with me now. Unfortunately you have not been told the reason,” He said as he grabbed our arms. I tried to tug my arm away but with no avail. The adults started to try to intervene but the man snapped his fingers and our parents froze. I looked at them, not moving. In many ways they had been my true parents. They took me in when no one wanted me.
“You are no use to them. You will harness your power to free them but first, you must come with me,” He said as he turned. As I stayed rooted to my spot, a wolf jumped out and charged for me and Snow. I looked at his wickedly sharp pair of teeth and I was scared to death. Adrenaline pumped through me. The man saw that and jumped in front of us as the wolf bit down. I looked up and saw that he had jumped infront of us.As he laid there, he beat the wolf away with his fist, sending the wolf flying. I saw in horror at his chest as red blood ran down.
“They have found us,” he said as he struggled to his feet. “We must hurry,” He said, as he opened his palm at the nearest hill. The side crumbled away and we all stumbled inside. Yeah, the hill fell open. I had a lot on my mind so I didn’t have time to stand there, flabbergasted. After jumping in front of a snarling wolf for our sakes, it seemed like the man wanted to help. He led us to two rooms. I couldn’t believe that this was real. He then went to the kitchen to heal the bites.
“What is your name?” I asked. “What do you want to do to us?”
“You don’t remember who you truly are?” He asked as he started to heal the wound. “You are the protectors of the earth and until you are get your power, the earth is under threat.”
“But who are you?” I asked, my patience wearing thin as I tried to get a name.
“You may call me Xeno,” He said, “I know that you probably have thousands of question but patience is sometimes your enemy and sometimes your friend.” Since it was already late, I went to the bedroom inside the hill. my head racing at a thousand miles per hour. I woke in the morning with a shake from a wide eyed Xeno.
“I should have known the wolf wasn’t a coincidence, we have to go now,” He told me. I jumped awake. I saw Snow next to me. I shook him and told him that we needed to move. When we were about to go out, the hill blew open, blasting us backward. In the hole were three shadowy figures.
“Defend yourselves, you are the earth’s only hope,” Xeno yelled to them as he attacked one of the shadows. He attacked as if he hadn’t been bit by a wolf at all. One had a spear, the other with a bow and arrow, and the last one with a sword. As Xeno engaged the shadow with the spear, I attacked the one with a bow and arrow. As I ran toward him he nocked an arrow and let it loose. Through my reflexes, I somersaulted to dodge the arrow without breaking stride. Once again, the adrenaline pumped through me. I got to my feet and I threw a punch. I hit him square in the chest and he went flying back in the tree. My punch felt stronger. The man got up and threw down his bow and drew two razor sharp knives that hummed through the air. Til that point, it had gone well. Then I saw Snow getting slammed aside with the flat of the sword. The attacker was over him, his sword raised to issue the final blow. I latched out a punched my attacker aside. As he fell backward, he swung randomly and got his knife stuck in my flesh. I looked at Snow, only a few feet away. My thigh exploded with pain. My vision started to blur as I dove between the attacker’s sword and Snow with the rest of my strength. A piece of what looked like metal flew out and latched onto my skin before I was hit. The sword made contact but bounced off harmlessly. It couldn’t because it had found a harder surface, my skin. I stood shakily a dispelled all the energy I had left. My attackers flew back. They unsteadily stood up. Despite the distance I could see the middle shadow smiling.
“You don’t know your own power,” he said, “the world isn’t ready for it.”
“I don’t have power,” I shouted back. Yet as I said it, I knew it was a lie.
“For too long, you have “protected” the earth, not anymore,” He cackled, “The age of the protectors are over as the era of shadow looms over the horizon.” And with that, he and his friends disappeared, leaving only a bow and quiver. The gloom lingered even in our victory. I looked down and saw the scale had been fused to my skin, making more along my arm.
“You have found true power,” Xeno said, “the scale you found recognized it. You have found that power comes from, not being selfish and taking everything for yourself but providing for other who need it more.” Before we left, I saw the bow and quiver that was left behind and I had an idea. Back when I was in kindergarten, my family went to a archery range and me and my sister loved it so we went there every winter and summer. I had gotten pretty good with the bow and arrow since then. I took it for my own and slung it over my back. I had a grim feeling I was going to need it. With no more words we set out until it was dark. As we set up camp I walked over to Xeno with still a distinguished limp.
“Where are we going?” I asked Xeno as the stars started to rise on the horizon.
“We will find the other protectors of the earth,” He said, his eyes reflecting the moonlight that shone down on us. Later that night, I couldn’t sleep so I walked outside my tent that was conveniently in the hill. I wondered where we were going to find the others. As I lay here under the stars and over the hills, I wonder.






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