We creep through the dark alleyway not knowing what to expect. A fork in the road approaches. After surveying both options, we take the right turn. “There are men, run!” Jackson yells. I grab Grace and sprint. Gunshots crackle on the ceiling. The weight of holding a 5-year-old sets in as my arms ache in pain. “Mary!” I hear Jackson's voice calling out for me. “Keep going,” he shouts, “I will catch up.” I turn my head to find him kneeling on the ground moaning in pain. I sprint, knowing that Jackson is strong enough to fight for himself. I keep running and end up finding an open doorway that leads to the outdoors. But I realize this is not the outdoors. This is magical. Out of breath, I find a rock to rest on. Right as I sit, I remember about Jackson. Knowing that I can’t run any longer with Grace in my hands, I leave her sitting on the rock and start the trek back to find Jackson.
Finally, I spot him lying on the ground. “Jackson,” I say, “wake up!” Frantically, I start shaking him trying to wake him up. I put my ear to his chest and a sense of relief floats over me when I feel a heartbeat. Using every last ounce of muscle, I pick him up and start carrying him back to the land we found. Suddenly, I hear voices. One is Graces and the other is very high pitched. I catch a few snip bits of what Grace is saying to the man. “ …secret door…black hallway…men…gunshots”
“Hello, my name is Ron. I am going to call my pals so they can come and help get him better,” the little man with Grace tells me. We all went back to the odd land and that’s when men, all looking like Ron, were scrambling around everywhere. Before I knew it, Jackson was up and moving around again.
“Miss Abby,” I hear Ron say, “Can I talk to you?”
“Sure,” I respond. We sit down and Ron starts yapping away.
“You are gonna have a lot of questions after what I’m about to tell you so just be patient. Unfortunately, you will not go back to where you came from. Once you enter that door, it locks and seals forever. The men chasing you, those were our enemies, and slowly but surely they are going to defeat us. It’s just a matter of when. I am very sorry about this news but brace yourself for what longs to come. So, in the best “babysitter-y” way you can, go tell those kids that their life is gonna drastically change.”
“But sir what’s gonna happen to us?” I ask, in shock.
“You. my lady, must wait and find out.”
Right as I walk to go tell the kids, I wake up.