Project Fourth Dimension

By , Huntington, NY
Part One
#738.
-Uncle Wally
What was that supposed to mean?
Okay, let me start from the beginning.
Yesterday, I was cleaning through my bedroom when a glint of gold caught my eye. A ring! I picked it up and put it on my finger. As soon as it slid on, a compartment at the top sprung open. I leaned in closely, only to get thwacked in the face by a sheet of paper! I fingered the top of the sheet and read it. It said:
Wally Theo’s Last Will and Testament
Executor: Who else but my niece, Julia Hopkins, my only relative. Julia, go through my belongings.
I had a feeling that it would be my quirky uncle. He hadn’t been alive long enough for me to remember him much- he died when I was four- but I’d heard that he was an amazing inventor. Of his 96 years (a full life!), for 86 years of his life, he had worked on a top-secret project he named “Project Fourth Dimension.” Could this will have something to do with it?
Only one way to find out.
I raced to the guest room, where a strange box labeled Uncle Wally lay. It wouldn’t open unless a ring of some sort was put in a certain depression. I pushed the ring in and crossed my fingers.
I can’t believe I found his will! I thought excitedly. For years, it hadn’t been found nor documented.
The box popped open as my thought ended. It was stuffed to the brim with-floral souvenir t-shirts??
A box couldn’t have been locked for that purpose.
I dug through the layers of shirts until I felt cold metal. I lifted it up to find a silver key, miniscule and engraved with the local bank’s name on it. A ribbon was attached to it that read, Good work. Go to the bank and tell the banker that the password is BOOKWORM. They will give you a s- The letters trailed off.
Confused yet delighted at my find, I brought the key with me to the bank.
“Bookworm,” I told the banker when I was on line. At first, he looked confused, but soon broke into a smile as if a reserved memory had gotten dug back up. He ushered me to the back room and handed me a- safe deposit box!
Even though the room was bordered by safe deposit boxes, the man found it easily because of its floral design. So Uncle Wally.
I turned the key in the lock and opened to find…empty. Except for another key…and a note.
This is where the story catches up.
#738.
-Uncle Wally
What was that supposed to mean?
The man, still smiling broadly, took the note from me and gestured for me to follow him.
He took me to a vault.
Vault #738.
When I turned around to thank him, I met merely air.
Puzzled, I turned the key in the lock with anticipation…
…and gasped.
Part Two
I was in an attic.
My house’s attic.
How could I tell?
The boxes.
Can you guess what design they were? Yup-floral.
All of Uncle Wally’s stuff was stashed in here by the busload.
But…how was I in my attic?
I mean, I had just stepped into Vault #738’s interior. How can I all of a sudden be in an attic? Impossible. But when I looked back to where I’d stepped in, the door has disappeared. Odd.
Maybe this is an illusion. Uncle Wally would never keep a boring vault…boring.
So I decided to walk forward.
Then I noticed that there was something crunching under my feet. Instead of feeling the hard, smooth wood of the attic floor, I felt something soft and powdery and extremely cold. I bent down to find a trail of it. I sifted it through my fingers: it tickled my fingerprints. Snow? I guessed. Odd.
Even still, I continued on. The air turned bitter and cold- I looked down to find myself equipped in a ski jacket and did a double-take.
Not just because of the outfit.
Etched in the snow was a message. My boots had smothered some of it, and I took a couple steps back to get a better look. It read:
PRO
The rest was covered in my footprints. Darn. Soon, I hoped I’d figure out its meaning.
As I continued trekking, the attic disappeared to reveal the open, moonlit air. However, I’d started getting used to all the strangeness. I’d gotten a head start living with that Uncle Wally.
It started snowing again. The second a snowflake touched my face, my face contorted with the agonizing cold. It felt like frostbite, yet ten times worse. I stumbled backward in the arising wind.
“FROSTBITE!!” The high-pitched squealing and laughter caught me off guard. Just as I’d sitting up, I fell back again. When the snow started hitting me again, I buried my face in my arms and mumbled, “Snow can’t do this!!”
“Oh, we’re not snow.” I felt a pierce of pain on my bare wrist.
I heard a cackle. “We’re Frostbite Pixies!!”
With this, I jumped up. “What are a bunch of fairies doing in the snow??”
A sparkle came up to me. I could barely make out jagged features and sharp wings. The fairy drawled like I was two years old, “Oh sweetie, we’re not fairies. Fairies are suck-ups. Pixies are troublemakers. In this place, there are only pixies.” With that, the pixie zoomed towards my nose. The shots of frostbite bombarded me again, and slowly I sank to the ground.
As soon as my head started giving in to gravity and the pain, a huge wave of heat hit me. The pixies fell back in the blast, and I struggled to keep my hair in check. I was busy basking in the warmth, but I heard the pixies screaming, “The Creator!!” from greater and greater distances. Finally, I got the courage to open my eyes.
“Where am I?”
A hand stretched out to help me up. I breathed in the smell of sunshine and freshly laundered madras. I lifted my gaze to see…
…floral print!!
“Welcome,” Uncle Wally’s smile lit up my world, “to the Fourth Dimension.”





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