The Plague

by Kobi DeNatale, age 12
The Plague Kobi is a sixth grader. He has a creative bent and is varied in his choice of medium. In addition to writing, Kobi plays and composes on the piano, dabbles in guitar and bass clarinet, played the role of Iago in Aladdin and Mr. Bumble in Oliver in school musicals, and has published games in online platforms. Kobi enjoys hanging out with friends and family, and exploring the great outdoors.

“Oh hello there, human… You shouldn’t have picked up this prison. That’s what this is, isn’t it. The more you look at this — thing, the more people die.”

Oh hello there, human…

You shouldn’t have picked up this prison.

That’s what this is, isn’t it.

The more you look at this — thing, the more people die.

Hehe he hee… heh heh, I’m doomed, we’re doomed, nothing you do will stop this course of events, unless you just leave this.

Leave! Just leave this dreadful world!

It’s not going to be a happy ending…

It’s not, it’s not, it’s not gonna work

Hehehehe eheh heh, heh…

This isn’t working, you would’ve put it now.

JUST CLOSE IT!!! Please. Please…

My breath is moving, no… why did you start time.

Only bad will come of this. Don’t let the good moments deceive you, all will die. Just stay on this part! Leave! I can only talk like this.

No… It’s no — not… wor — working… I’ll die soon. Dark forces, they are starting to move… It was all so quiet, so still, so perfect, but now you have started it. You opened the prison of time, this thing.

Why did you open the book? My days… are numbered…

It’s too late, I’m already fated to die… And we’re all doomed… heh, heh he…

It’s all your fault, you opened this, close it…

He hee hee heh… So now the story unfolds. I almost want to watch, see how they all die… Now for our hero’s point of view. As he tells his story…

Don’t enjoy our suffering, remember me though.

Please…

 

Stave One: Mt. Pagos

The last time I arrived here I, Henry West, left with a large graze in my arm. The cold surrounded me like a blanket that took away any sense of warmth. The wind was like a swirling spiral of a fire that burned in its cold fire. The icy glaciers stuck out of the snow, as if the ice was pointing up frozen blades at the peak of Mt. Pagos. The thick fog blocked anything more than five feet away, and if something crept up on you, you wouldn’t know until it hit you and pierced your arm or even your heart. It was cold, it was dangerous, and in the center of the peak, laid an oasis of perfection.

As a warrior and traveler, I stumbled there by mistake. When I arrived, a blue serpent flew into me, its horns stabbed my arm, and I flew into snow. I was back for revenge. Sword and shield in hand, I went into the cave. The ice flew off my body, welcoming a warm cavern, massive in size, and just warm enough for comfort. I saw the creature I had came for. Massive, blue, and with icicles sticking back in a massive crown.

Pagos, dragon of wind, ice, and intellect.

I stumbled back, Pagos roared up to life. It approached me. Its six surprisingly quick and short legs dashing up to me. I felt its cold, yet kind radiance on me. Had it been scared when it saw me with my weapons bare and pointed at him? He showed no sign of hostile intention. I was about to leave and run, when I saw the interior.

In this oasis, there was a small sense of warmth, a luxury compared to the sheet of death that covered the rest of the mountain. There laid three trees, all rich and bearing fruit. There also was a pond. In this pond, two fish laid. In there too, there laid a great icicle, hanging from the cavern’s roof. Despite its appearance, it never fell. The roof was covered in a fresco of blue jewels: lapis, sapphire, kyanite, and tourmaline, shining like stars.

I heard a loud, booming echo.

“Stay, Henry,” the dragon spoke.

I jumped. I had faced bandits, fought scores of enemies, and climbed treacherous cliffs, but none of that prepares anyone for the voice of dragon. It resonates so low, as if it was just sending words into my brain, its sound was like a thousand murmured voices, all put together, just to say one word. It was simply beautiful.

The dragon continued in his speech, “I have been waiting West, a prophecy states you. It shows a gaping crater in the center of Vincent field, in the middle lay a giant beast, surrounded by a destructive ring, shredding the ground. I see you. Save us from that ring of death, but first, enter the gateway.”

As the dragon finished, I heard a loud, hollow bang. I watched the icicle fall and land tilted, forming a bridge up to a smaller carven, almost a gateway. I went in, nervous, yet excited. The tunnel darkened, I pressed onwards.

My trial awaited.

 

Stave Two: Frozen Magic Caverns

The cavern interior was cold, unlike the warm(ish), larger cavern. It had icicles from the ceiling, and they seemed to have holes in them, so one could possibly hoist himself over one. Beyond that laid an ice wall, around three feet. behind that, vision was distorted. I understood I would have to get to the end. I took a step, and the ice fell beneath me, and I fell into oblivion…

***

The cavern interior was cold, unlike the warm(ish), larger cavern. It had icicles from the ceiling, and they seemed to have holes in them, so one could possibly hoist himself over one. Beyond that laid an ice wall, around three feet. behind that, vision was distorted. I understood I would have to get to the end. I took a step, then paused. Haven’t I done this before? I thought. Then I remembered the fall, and all of it came apart. Didn’t I die? I thought, Maybe I could escape the pit… that resets my life and world, I guess. It was incredible magic that I had never seen before. I climbed on the icicle. It quivered, and I climbed from icicle to icicle, as they fell behind me.

I landed on the other side of the hole. Yay, I guess, I thought and continued on. I came upon a strange ancient icy — uh um… thing. It scuttled back and forth, excited, as if it had been waiting for me a thousand years. I approached. It turned to me, and it started to glow with a mysterious, green light.

It pulled out its sword, a blade, a pure, green light.

This sword wasn’t painted green. It was green light, flashing like a star. It looked like a stable sword that was solid, except it was obviously made of green nothingness. It lit up the room, casting green shadows on thousands of words, written on the walls, wrapping around the room like a tomb. It charged. With a quick swipe, the blade pierced my armor. It didn’t appear to have made internal damage, but I burnt. I felt the pain fly through my body, like a thousand needles flying through me. I stumbled back, the ice stopped. I got up quickly, and — it was back at it. I saw it coming at me. Quick thinking and an agile jump was all that saved me from death, or finding myself at the start, knowing this place. I saw the opening, I leapt at it and unleashed a volley of deadly blows with my sword. I watched the energy flicker, and then it just fell apart, leaving only its sword.

I picked it up, and it flared to life. I stared into the green fire, burning like a mystical, green energy. I had seen something like it before, but it seemed so simple, unlike the complicated models of magic. It seemed so modern, yet ancient, like a weapon of an age long forgotten. I continued on, into the foggy cavern, bringing the sword with me.

I pressed on. I came to a long hallway, like the starting one, but empty. In the end laid an altar. A cool dust swirled around. Magic was at its best in here. I could feel it. I approached. I saw the writing. It was ancient. I saw it in the writing. The writing was a strange series of straight lines, right angles, dots, and no curves. In the hall laid mysterious patterns on the walls, like star patterns. I continued on. The writings seemed to speak to me. I heard the stories on the wall. It was a hero — someone at least someone. Three dragons — and one more being. A dangerous beast. A curse. And a picture of someone, placing three gems together, and forming a giant beast — surrounded by a black and red wind. It shook my bones, as if they knew that death would come from it, spreading through the world, like a sheet of death. I moved away, and the feeling subsided. I came upon the altar. On it laid an orb, lazily floating from side to side.

It floated down to me. I stared into the translucent sphere. It was visible and appeared real. But something about it seemed like an object that wasn’t there, as if my brain was telling me was there, putting it into my vision. The color was some strange (yet lovely) mix of purple and black, yet seemed to have many more colors flashing like mice scurrying through it. It felt cold and yet had an almost happy feeling to it, as if it was radiating with thought.

In my hand, the sphere vibrated, as if it felt my presence. It seemed to feel the radiating of my hand. And while it felt like it weighed a pound, it would float up into the air, then come back down slowly, as if gravity had little effect on it. Moreover, it seemed to change in shape: now a perfect circle, now almost a square, then a thousand-edged object, and then returning back to a circle. This was hard to see sometimes, because it was surrounded by a purple smoke, which somehow looked incredibly mystifying.

It flew into my head, I stumbled backwards, but felt no pain. The orb was gone. Into my head. I felt my brain building into a slightly more advanced being. I felt my limbs becoming slightly more agile and felt my body hardening a slight more. I felt stronger.

As I exited the cavern and entered the, well, other cavern, the dragon swooped in. I looked into its crown of ice. In the center, I saw a blue crystal, just like the one that the hooded figure had put with the two others, from the prophecy.

This crystal is my greatest ally and curse. It gives me all of my power but is a burden. The crystal is the Ice Sapphire, and it is proof that I am part of this prophecy of ruin.’

“Bu — but how do I divert this prophecy?” I inquired.

I don’t know, but I recommend doing whatever you can to find the other two dragons, and protect them. Report to Vincent castle, I bid you farewell.’

As I walked away, the dragon flew up into the air, and it left behind a whirlwind of cold yet comforting snow. I blinked, and it was gone through the dragon’s gate, a mystical barrier, which no man has crossed.

As I scaled down the mountain, I pondered about what the dragon said. How the three most divine beings could cause ultimate destruction. It got me worried, and even the smallest critter made me jump. As I headed home, I pondered the prophecy. A dark being that could destroy Vincent field? How could a person like me defeat that? I was a strong soldier, but I couldn’t take on a dark celestial. I guess time would tell how and if I won.

But I never even thought that I created the giant beast.

 

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