Maya and Via by Yena Lee
“I hate you!” screeched Muggin angrily, with her poised finger at the ready, shaking with fury.
“You don’t know me!” Huggin shot back.
They had their faces pinned against each other; Huggin’s scrawny and skinny one and Muggin’s fat one.
“I could…” he paused for thought, “I could tear you into shreds!”
“Well, you can’t! Anyway, I know you well enough that you can’t do that! Anyway, we share the same body, remember?”
“Of course I remember, you insolent butt head!”
And this bickering kept going on for hours, until their mother called: “time for dinner!”
“We’ll save this fighting for later,” said Muggin, seething like a storm.
They were both squatting, their butts facing outwards. Then, they spun on their heels and slouched back inside the crooked, bricked cottage with lights that lit up the entire forest, front to back.
The jet black forest was always renowned for its beautiful critters and tall varying trees. But no one ever visited there for a holiday. Only once. Via visited. Via shivered in the wind, and held her hand made cloak to her tightly. The whirling wind whistled woefully. The sound of owls hooting only made her frightened even more. CRUNCH. She removed her polished black boots back carefully, and sighed in relief. A fallen autumn leaf. She wondered if this place even had seasons; Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter.
Then, when she glanced up again, she saw a small cottage. Her hazel brown eyes lit up. Finally! She hurried up a bit. She was sure that the people or creatures here would let her in their cottage for a day or so.
As she sped up, she thought, who would greet me? What kind of food would I eat during those days? Why would they let me in, anyway?
Finally, when she reached the wooden door, she breathed in to calm herself and looked down. No. She had had a speech in her head, so she could do this? So, she looked for a place to knock, but it was filled with sharp spines and needles. She sighed. How come the creatures or people here were so… so unwelcoming, and unfriendly? She hung her head and walked down the stairs sadly. Where was she going to live now?
“Again?” Huggin and Muggin groaned and hung their heads, but just as they did, their heads bumped.
“Oi! You!” Huggin suddenly jumped up.
“Hey, you!” Muggin shouted sharply and loudly.
“You did that on pur –”
“Uh, uh, uh…” Their mother put her hands out in the middle of them two.
“Time to eat. Now, no fighting,” she scolded them, and they both walked slowly and silently back.
Berries and vegetables. Again. They hardly ever had anything except from berries. And vegetables. Tonight, they were having vegetable stew. Left over from last dinner. After grumbling over dinner, they brushed their teeth, and fought for another two hours, then it was 10:30pm, so they went to sleep. But then again, they fought again for about 30 minutes, then got scolded from their mother, and then, finally, went to sleep at about 11:15pm.
In the end, she tried sleeping by herself in the cold, shivery night. For dinner, she had had some berries and sap from the trees. She had a small sip of cool, cold water before trying to shiver herself to sleep.
How is she going to survive?
Is no one really going to take her in?
When is she ever going to find her father and get out of this unwelcoming island? But in the end, she slept a sleepless night.
In the morning, she was woken up by the black crows screaming at her to wake her up.
“Okay, I’m getting up, okay.”
She put her left hand between them, but when she did, something strange happened. One especially hazel bird flew down, and perched atop her cream palm.
“Oh,” she giggled and placed the bird on the ground, where the bahama nuthatch jumped off her hand and tweeted to her, as if to say goodbye, then flew off.
She stood up, and thought, maybe I can find my father after all today. And maybe, maybe, that bird was a sign of luck. She gathered up her things, and went for some berries to eat in the morning.
She put on a brave face, and said to not really anybody, “I will survive until I find my dad.”
Then, she marched off into the clearance that she had gone to for berries when it was dinner yesterday night.
“Come on!” Huggin and Muggin’s mother barked at them. “Up! Now!”
“Just a few more minutes…” Huggin mumbled back without opening his eyes.
“Ughh!” Their mother groaned and threw up her arms. “I said! Up!”
“Okay, okay, I’m up.” Muggin mumbled and started to get out.
“Hold up, Mug! I need to get my arm up, too, you know!”
“I said, Hug, don’t call me that!” Muggin screamed with clenched teeth.
“Well, you stop calling me Hug, then!” Huggin exclaimed.
Then, they started fighting. Again.
“No, no, no. I will not have you two fighting again. Get out of bed, and use leaf paste this time, not just with your stick brushes,” she paused. “NOW!”
So glumly, they stood up and walked out of the bedroom, trailing their feet behind.
She had travelled a long way, now. She took something out of her pocket that she hadn’t noticed last time. Wait. It was a piece of paper. It could be the map of this island! So carefully, she took the piece of paper out of her winter jacket pocket. Then, she unfolded the five folds carefully.
One… Two… Three… Four… Five…
An old note. She sighed. Seriously? What help could “Meet dad in the Abominable Mountains at ICU-RUOK?” be? That was from last year!
Well, she thought. Too bad.
She folded it up again and put it back in her jacket. She started trudging up the track. And then, she paused. Wait. I should collect the berries. Then, she started going down-hill again. She quickly filled up her basket and pockets until they were bulging with berries and started going up-hill again. She found a walking stick filled with sea algae. I wonder how this washed up here. I’m not even sure if there are any oceans here!
Well, she thought. Somebody’s got to use it!
She pulled the algae out while making a face, but as she did, she realised. A piece of paper stuck to it by the sea water. She started unfolding it with trembling hands. One…Two…Three…Four…
She read, Abominable dad! Meet in at ICU-RUOK?
Wait. The note in her pocket.
She quickly unzipped the jacket, and spread the two pieces of paper onto her pants. The first one read,
Meet dad in the Abominable Mountains at ICU-RUOK?
And the second one read,
Abominable dad! Meet in at ICU-RUOK?
Hmmm… She looked for a pen in her jacket pocket. Found one. On the pen, it said, ori cku. Hmmm… That was strange, too.
She crossed out every word. They were the same words! Only put into different sentences… And she also realised that ICURUOK were printed onto the pen, only jumbled up. Strange… And mysterious… She kept on walking, and soon, she had collected about 6 pieces of paper! She kept them, just in case if she needed them. She felt like she was going on an adventure!
She had finally collected the last piece, and her heart was racing to win gold. Then, she suddenly closed her eyes. No way I’m opening this… she thought. No way. If she did, and if the folded piece of paper was just an old recipt, she would never forgive herself. Never. Not in a million years, not saying that she would live for a million years!
Okay. I’m going to open it. Quickly, she glanced around the area. Good. Just the autumn breeze whistling cheerfully, as well as autumn leaves dancing in circles like a whirl-wind. She could hear the wonderful sounds of birds tweeting happily from up in the sky. But none of that helped to make her better. Great. She whirled back to where she was, and started opening it up with shaking hands. She breathed deeply and started the next one. As she knew, there were 7 folds for this one. So she opened it again, again, again, again, again, and one more time- again.
“Yes!” she squealed happily. The last one!
This time, though, it said, ABOMINABLE MOUNTAIN. GO THERE. 7 STORIES!
What? This was it? No clues? She felt shocked. You’re kidding me!
“That’s right…no clues.”
She whipped around. She couldn’t believe her eyes. Another exact mirror of herself was facing… her. “And yes, I can read your mind!” She said in a sing-song voice.
“Aghhhhh!” Via screamed.
“Ok… So, you come from…”
“Ahoy,” Maya nodded encouragingly. They were sitting in an icy cold cave now.
“And… You have super-powers.”
“That can…” She egged her on.
“That can teleport,” She counted off with her fingers, “shape form, stop time, let “gas” out when you want to?”
“Yeah…” she sheepishly nodded.
“Ok… Sure.” Via confirmed, although she was still shocked that Maya had superpowers.
“Let’s do this!” Maya exclaimed.
Via nodded bravely.
I mean, things go wrong sometimes, don’t they? she thought.
“Then, let’s goooooo!” Her voice echoed through the mountains.
Via had no choice but to follow.
“For the snow men!”
“They don’t have to be “men”!”
“Okay then woman!”
Huggin and Muggin were going to the alps to play. The alps… that Via and Maya were in.